Coming Soon!
Women in Popular Culture
The Evolution of Women’s Roles in American Entertainment
by Laura L. Finley
March 2023, 719pp, 7x10
2 volumes, Greenwood

Hardcover: 978-1-4408-7412-3
$214, £165, 187€, A294
eBook Available: 978-1-4408-7413-0
Please contact your preferred eBook vendor for pricing.

Films starring female protagonists do well at the box office, but in 2022 actresses are still paid significantly less than their male counterparts.

Including more than 300 alphabetically listed entries, this volume presents a timely and detailed overview of some of the most significant contributions women have made to American popular culture from the silent film era to the present day.

This two-volume encyclopedia details the lives and accomplishments of women from various aspects of popular culture, including film, television, music, fashion, and literature. In addition to profiles, the encyclopedia also includes chapters that provide a historical review of gender, domesticity, marriage, work, and inclusivity in popular culture as well as a chronology of key achievements.

This reference work is an ideal introduction to the roles women have played, both in the spotlight and behind it, throughout the history of popular culture in America. From the stars of Hollywood’s Golden Age to the chart toppers of the 2020s, author Laura L. Finley documents how attitudes towards these icons have evolved and how their influence has shifted throughout time. The entries and essays also address such timely topics as feminism, the #MeToo movement, and the gender pay gap.


  • Offers a detailed review of the history of more than 300 women in American TV, film, and music, including influential fictional depictions of women
  • Includes a chronology of important achievements relevant to women in popular culture
  • Includes five introductory chapters detailing such topics as domesticity, motherhood, representation, and misogyny
  • Offers a glimpse into how women of different races, ethnicities, and gender and sexual identities have shaped the modern entertainment industry
Laura L. Finley, PhD, is professor of sociology and criminology at Barry University in Miami Shores, FL. She is author, co-author, or editor of more than 35 books as well as numerous journal articles and book chapters. Finley has authored many books from ABC-CLIO/Praeger, including Gangland: An Encyclopedia of Gang Life from Cradle to Grave, Domestic Abuse and Sexual Assault in Popular Culture, and more. She is also a syndicated columnist with PeaceVoice and a community activist for peace, justice, human rights, and gender equality.
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