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Divisions of Welfare A Critical Introduction to Comparative Social Policy by Norman Ginsburg

Divisions of Welfare A Critical Introduction to Comparative Social Policy


Divisions of Welfare A Critical Introduction to Comparative Social Policy by Norman Ginsburg

This outstanding textbook recounts the major policy developments in Sweden, the former FRG, the United States and Britain since the 1930s and 1940s and concentrates on the restructuring of social policy since the world recession of the mid-1970s. Chapters on each welfare state analyze five areas of policy: policy ideology and welfare expenditure; income maintenance policies and outcomes; race and racial inequalities; women and family policies; and the health care system. Integrating class, race and gender perspectives into comparative social policy analysis, Norman Ginsburg focuses on the impact of social and economic policies on social inequalities, as well as on the role of labour movements, anti-racist movements and women's movements in shaping social policy. He convincingly argues that rather than mitigating the effects of social inequalities, social policies in all four states have in fact played a part in widening class, race and gender inequalities since the mid-1970s.


`This book represents an important step forward in providing detailed and critical comparative analysis of four societies
welfare states in terms of class, gender and race. It will be indispensable for social policy students

' - Fiona Williams, The Open University

`This book fills a huge need among teachers in social policy and comparative welfare states. With admirable clarity, Ginsburg manages to bring together a colossal amount of analysis and description of how the World's major welfare states function, how their social programs are organized and how they affect inequality, poverty, minorities and women. The choice of comparing Britain, Germany, Sweden and the United States gives the reader a synoptic, yet thorough, overview of the main competing welfare state models. This is, simply, the perfect reader for higher-level undergraduate and graduate courses in sociology, social administration and political science' - Gosta Esping-Andersen, European University Institute

`A distinguishing feature of Ginsburg's book is its critical perspective which differs from social-democratic, Marxist and feminist perspectives yet owes something to all three. The four country studies are rich in empirical detail the facts always appear within a framework of interpretation. Well-organized and clearly written, Ginsburg's book is a welcome addition to the literature of comparative social policy. I shall certainly recommend it to my students' - Ramesh Mishra, York University

`Ginsburg to his credit never loses sight of the need to provide comparative information whilst adopting a country by country approach to policy description. Frequent comparisons are made between the four countries described in the book [Sweden, Germany, the United States and Britain], and the discussion always manages to remain uncluttered... provides a good introduction to some of the themes that will undoubtedly confront students and researchers in the not too distant future' - Journal of Social Policy

`gives a thought-provoking introduction to what different kinds of welfare states look like, in terms of the underlying ideologies, the design of the various welfare programmes and differences in welfare outcomes. It is also written by a scholar who is very committed to his subject; it raises important questions and it makes suggestions as to where to find the answers' - Journal of European Social Policy

`His emphasis on the social divisions (along the lines of 'race', gender and class) which underly social policy is also a healthy corrective to the 'neutral'
language of policy

-making, with its new stress on citizens, consumers and customers' - Local Government Studies

About the Author

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Book Info

Publication date

25th March 1992


Norman Ginsburg

More books by Norman Ginsburg
Author 'Like for Like'


SAGE Publications Ltd


240 pages


Social welfare & social services
Social issues & processes
Central government policies



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