Some Effects of Proportions on Group Life

Skewed Sex Ratios and Responses to Token Women
  • Rosabeth Moss Kanter


In his classic analysis of the significance of numbers in social life, Georg Simmel (1950) argued persuasively that numerical modifications effect qualitative transformations in group interaction. Simmel dealt almost exclusively with the impact of absolute numbers, however, with group size as a determinant of form and process. The matter of relative numbers, of proportion of interacting social types, was left unexamined. But this feature of collectivities has an impact on behavior. Its neglect has sometimes led to inappropriate or misleading conclusions.


Token Status Sales Force Male Peer Master Status Social Type 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Aries, Elizabeth. 1973. “Interaction Patterns and Themes of Male, Female, and Mixed Groups.” Ph.D. dissertation, Harvard University.Google Scholar
  2. Asch, Solomon E. 1960. “Effects of Group Pressure upon the Modification and Distortion of Judgments.” Pp. 189–200 in Group Dynamics, edited by Dorwin Cartwright and Alvin Zander, 2d ed. Evanston, Ill.: Row, Peterson.Google Scholar
  3. Athanassiades, John C. 1974. “An Investigation of Some Communication Patterns of Female Subordinates in Hierarchical Organizations.” Human Relations 27 (March): 195–209.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Coser, Rose Laub. 1960. “Laughter among Colleagues: A Study of the Social Functions of Humor among the Staff of a Mental Hospital.” Psychiatry 23 (February): 81–95.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. Cussler, Margaret. 1958. The Woman Executive. New York: Harcourt Brace.Google Scholar
  6. Epstein, Cynthia Fuchs. 1970. Woman’s Place: Options and Limits on Professional Careers. Berkeley: University of California Press.Google Scholar
  7. Fenchel, G. H., J. H. Monderer, and E.L. Hartley. 1951. “Subjective Status and the Equilibrium Hypothesis.” Journal of Abnormal and Social Psychology 46 (October): 476–79.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Ferber, Marianne Abeles, and Joan Althaus Huber. 1975. “Sex of Student and Instructor: A Study of Student Bias.” American Journal of Sociology 80 (January): 949–63.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Glazer, Nathan. 1976. Affirmative Discrimination. New York: Basic.Google Scholar
  10. Greenbaum, Marcia. 1971. “Adding ‘Kenntnis’ to ‘Kirche, Kuche, und Kinder.”’ Issues in Industrial Society 2 (2): 61–68.Google Scholar
  11. Hennig, Margaret. 1970. “Career Development for Women Executives.” Ph.D. dissertation, Harvard Univeristy.Google Scholar
  12. Howe, Irving, and B. J. Widick. 1949. The UAW and Walter Reuther. New York: Random House.Google Scholar
  13. Hughes, Everett C. 1944. “Dilemmas and Contradictions of Status.” American Journal of Sociology 50 (March): 3535–59.Google Scholar
  14. Hughes, Everett C. 1946. “Race Relations in Industry.” Pp. 107–22 in Industry and Society, edited by W. F. Whyte, New York: McGraw-Hill.Google Scholar
  15. Hughes, Everett C. 1958. Men and Their Work. Glencoe, Ill.: Free Press.Google Scholar
  16. Jackson, Elton F. 1962. “Status Inconsistency and Symptoms of Stress.” American Sociological Review 27 (August): 469–80.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Jourard, Sidney M. 1964. The Transparent Self: Self Disclosure and Well Being. Princeton, N.J.: Van Nostrand.Google Scholar
  18. Kanter, Rosabeth Moss. 1972. Commitment and Community. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
  19. Kanter, Rosabeth Moss. 1975. “Women and the Structure of Organizations: Explorations in Theory and Behavior.” Pp. 34–74 in Another Voice: Feminist Perspectives on Social Life and Social Science, edited by M. Millman and R. M. Kanter. New York: Doubleday Anchor.Google Scholar
  20. Kanter, Rosabeth Moss. 1976a. “The Impact of Hierarchical Structures on the Work Behavior of Women and Men.” Social Problems 23 (April): 415–30.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Kanter, Rosabeth Moss. 1976b. “Interpreting the Results of a Social Experiment.” Science 192 (May 14): 662–63.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Kanter, Rosabeth Moss. 1976c. “The Policy Issues: Presentation VI.” Signs: Journal of Women in Culture and Society 1 (Spring, part 2): 282–91.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Kanter, Rosabeth Moss. 1976d. “Women and Organizations: Sex Roles, Group Dynamics, and Change Strategies.” In Beyond Sex Roles, edited by A. Sargent. St. Paul: West.Google Scholar
  24. Kanter, Rosabeth Moss. 1976e. Men and Women of the Corporation. New York: Basic. Laws, Judith Long. 1975. “The Psychology of Tokenism: An Analysis.” Sex Roles 1 (March): 51–67.Google Scholar
  25. Lenski, Gerhard. 1956. “Social Participation and the Crystallization of Status.” American Sociological Review 21 (August): 458–64.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Levine, Adeline, and Janice Crumrine. 1975. “Women and the Fear of Success: A Problem in Replication.” American Journal of Sociology 80 (January): 964–74.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Lorber, Judith. 1975. “Trust, Loyalty, and the Place of Women in the Informal Organization of Work.” Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Sociological Association, San Francisco.Google Scholar
  28. Lynch, Edith M. 1973. The Executive Suite: Feminine Style. New York: AMACOM.Google Scholar
  29. Megaree, Edwin I. 1969. “Influence of Sex Roles on the Manifestation of Leadership.” Journal of Applied Psychology 53 (October): 377–82.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. O’Farrell, Brigid. 1973. “Affirmative Action and Skilled Craft Work.” Xeroxed. Center for Research on Women, Wellesley College.Google Scholar
  31. Rieff, Philip, ed. 1963. Freud: Sexuality and the Psychology of Love New York: Collier.Google Scholar
  32. Sarason, Seymour B. 1973. “Jewishness, Blackness, and the Nature-Nurture Controversy.” American Psychologist 28 (November): 961–71.Google Scholar
  33. Segal, Bernard E. 1962. “Make Nurses: A Case Study in Status Contradiction and Prestige Loss.” Social Forces 41 (October): 31–38.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Seifert, Kelvin. 1973, Kelvin. 1973. “Some Problems of Men in Child Care Center Work.” Pp. 69–73 in Men and Masculinity, edited by Joseph H. Pleck and Jack Sawyer. Englewood Cliffs, N.J.: Prentice-Hall, 1974.Google Scholar
  35. Simmel, Georg. 1950. The Sociology of Georg Simmel. Translated by Kurt H. Wolff. Glencoe, Ill.: Free Press.Google Scholar
  36. Strodtbeck, Fred L., Rita M. James and Charles Hawkins, 1957. “Social Status in Jury Deliberations.” American Sociological Review 22 (December): 713–19.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Strodtbeck, Fred L., Rita M. James and Charles Hawkins. 1957. “Social Status in Jury Deliberations.” American Sociological Review 22 (December): 713–19.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Strong, Bryan. 1973. “Toward a History of the Experiential Family: Sex and Incest in the Nineteenth Century Family.” Journal of Marriage and the Family 35 (August): 457–66.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Taylor, Shelley E. 1975. “The Token in a Small Group.” Xeroxed. Harvard University Department of Psychology.Google Scholar
  40. Taylor, Shelley E., and Susan T. Fiske. 1976. “The Token in the Small Group: Research Findings and Theoretical Implications.” In Psychology and Politics: Collected Papers, edited by J. Sweeney. New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press.Google Scholar
  41. Tiger, Lionel. 1969. Men in Groups. New York: Random House.Google Scholar
  42. Tiger, Lionel, and Joseph Shepher. 1975. Women in the Kibbutz. New York: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich.Google Scholar
  43. U.S. Council of Economic Advisers. 1973. Annual Report of the Council of Economic Advisers. Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office.Google Scholar
  44. Wolman, Carol, and Hal Frank. 1975. “The Solo Woman in a Professional Peer Group.” American Journal of Orthopsychiatry 45 (January): 164–71.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Zaleznick, Abraham, C. R. Christensen, and F. J. Roethlisberger. 1958. The Motivation, Productivity, and Satisfaction of Workers: A Prediction Study. Boston: Harvard Business School Division of Research.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The University of Chicago Press 1977

Authors and Affiliations

  • Rosabeth Moss Kanter

There are no affiliations available

Personalised recommendations