In the wake of the 2008 financial crisis, even as the media celebrated women as potential saviors of the economy, the financial world had removed women from senior Wall Street jobs. Most of the women who broke through glass ceilings to become leaders in finance were gone by the time of the crisis, not necessarily of their own volition, including the subjects of this lively and provocative historical ethnography. Georgetown University anthropologist Fisher, co-editor of Frontiers of Capital: Ethnographic Reflections on the New Economy, combines the detached curiosity of an anthropologist studying the folkways of a tribal village with a sure grasp of history, politics, and economics, as well as an affectionate regard for her subjects, a small group of highly successful women who entered Wall Street in the ’60s…. Fisher’s argument about the emergence of “market feminism,” a synthesis of liberal feminist values with neo-liberalist ideology that could provide new opportunities for women on Wall Street, is worthy of readers’ attention.
What’s particularly exciting and weird is that now have two books I’m reading both written by women I know who though separated by a generation both come out of or will come out of Barnard. Probably says more about me than anything else, including us all being privileged, but look at what they’re writing about (the other woman’s book). I look forward to reading them both (almost done with the latter).