The Sex FactorHow Women Made the West Rich
The Sex Factor
How Women Made the West Rich
Why did the west become so rich? Why is inequality on the rise? How ‘free’ should markets be? And what does sex have to do with it? 

In this passionate and skilfully argued book, leading feminist Victoria Bateman shows how we can only understand the burning economic issues of our time if we put sex and gender – ‘the sex factor’ – at the heart of the picture. Spanning the globe and drawing on thousands of years of history, Bateman weaves rigorous analysis with autobiographical insights to tell a bold, ambitious story about how the status and freedom of women – particularly freedom over their bodies – is central to our prosperity and economic wellbeing. Genuine female empowerment requires us to not only recognise the liberating potential of the market and the importance of smart government policies, but to also challenge the double-standard of many modern feminists when they celebrate the brain while denigrating the body. 

This iconoclastic book is a devastating exposé of what we have lost from ignoring ‘the sex factor’, and how reversing this neglect can drive the economic policies we need to deliver a wealthy, environmentally sustainable and equal society in the twenty-first century.
Show More
Buy Now


Order Exam Copy

For Lecturers Only

More Info
  • March 2019 (pb)
    March 2019 (hb)
  • 248 pages
  • 138 x 216 mm / 5 x 9 in
Available Formats
  • Hardback $69.95
  • 9781509526765
  • Paperback $24.95
  • 9781509526772
  • Open eBook $24.95
  • 9781509526802
Table of Contents
  • Contents
  • Acknowledgments
  • Introduction
  • Part I: Prosperity
  • Chapter 1. Censored: How the West (supposedly) got ahead
  • Chapter 2. Uncensored: The Secret Recipe of Economic Success
  • Part II: Inequality
  • Chapter 3. When did sexism begin?
  • Chapter 4. Income inequality: what does sex have to do with it?
  • Chapter 5. Sex sells
  • Part III: State versus Markets
  • Chapter 6. Marx versus Markets
  • Chapter 7. Why women make better states
  • Part IV: Humanity
  • Chapter 8. Me, Myself and I: a history of the individual
  • Chapter 9. Humans versus Robots
  • Chapter 10. Economics meets Feminism
  • Conclusion
  • Endnotes
  • Bibliography
About the Author
Victoria Bateman is a fellow and lecturer in economics at Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge University. A high-profile commentator for Bloomberg View and CapX, she has led calls for a sexual revolution in economics as well as conducting various high profile 'naked protests' to highlight the marginalisation of womens bodies in public life.
Show More


‘Ever controversial, Victoria Bateman's new book will cause a stir. While fun and engaging, it also packs a serious punch and explodes the myth that economics is gender neutral. If you are passionate about economics and feminism, this is well worth a read.’
Ayesha Hazarika, former special adviser to Gordon Brown, Harriet Harman and Ed Miliband; political commentator, broadcaster and stand-up comedian

‘It always was insane to think of markets and the public sphere as independent of life in the home and the private sphere.  Yet male economists after Adam Smith — not Smith himself — spread the insanity.  In her crystal-clear yet scholarly book Victoria Bateman provides a sane alternative.  Read it, and you’ll know how we all, men and women together, became free and rich and, we hope, a little bit saner.’
Deirdre McCloskey, University of Illinois at Chicago, author of Bourgeois Equality

‘[Victoria Bateman is] a bold, intelligent and original thinker... the Lady Godiva de nos jours.’
The Amorist
Show More