This chapter explains how it is one of the best documented facts of American politics that groups with less power and authority in society are less likely to participate in politics. People typically think of these groups as defined by lines of race, ethnicity, language, income, age, or education. In modern America, observers of politics focus on the political disadvantages of groups with less resources: those left out of the privileges of class, those still stigmatized by race, those struggling as new arrivals from far-off places. But what goes with little notice is that even now, in an age when women have made great strides in American society, America's female citizens greatly underparticipate relative to men in key areas of politics and other public settings of decision making.
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