Past Event

The Gender of Capital: How Families Perpetuate Wealth Inequality

March 20, 2024
6:00 PM - 7:00 PM
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East Gallery, Maison Française, Buell Hall

A Talk by Céline Bessière

In many countries, property law grants equal rights to men and women. Why, then, do women still accumulate less wealth than men? Combining quantitative, ethnographic, and archival research, Céline Bessière and co-author Sybille Gollac The Gender of Capital explain how and why, in every class of society, women are economically disadvantaged with respect to their husbands, fathers, and brothers. The reasons lie with the unfair economic arrangements that play out in divorce proceedings, estate planning, and other crucial situations where law and family life intersect.

Céline Bessière is Professor of Sociology at Paris-Dauphine University (PSL University) and a senior member at the Institut Universitaire de France. She studies the material, economic and legal dimensions of family, in particular through the analysis of inheritance and marital breakdown. Her new project is about gender and wealth accumulation in Europe. Her research is at the crossroads of several fields: economic sociology, sociology of law and justice, sociology of gender, class and family. 

This event is cosponsored by Columbia Maison Francaise and Institute for the Study of Sexuality and Gender.