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The Diversity ParadoxParties, Legislatures, and the Organizational Foundations of Representation in America$
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Kristin Kanthak and George Krause

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780199891726

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199891726.001.0001

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Diversity Dilemmas in Democratic Representation

Diversity Dilemmas in Democratic Representation

(p.3) 1 Diversity Dilemmas in Democratic Representation
The Diversity Paradox

Kristin Kanthak

George A. Krause

Oxford University Press

This chapter outlines The Diversity Paradox - the notion that the power a minority group wields in a political organization may actually decrease as the group’s numbers increase. It explains the importance of this issue, since the Diversity Paradox challenges the conventional wisdom that increasing descriptive representation (numbers) will lead to increased substantive representation (outcomes). The chapter goes on to describe the five counterintuitive lessons of the Diversity Paradox, and to discuss why the book focuses on the cases of women in the U.S. House of Representatives, the U.S. Senate, and state legislatures. The chapter also outlines the structure of the remainder of the book.

Keywords:   diversity, diversity paradox, descriptive representation, substantive representation, Pitkin, women

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