Book Review

Women Leading Education Across the Continents

Sharing the Spirit, Fanning the Flame

edited by Helen C. Sobehart, Rowman & Littlefield Education, 2009, 344 pp., $95 hardcover, $29.95 softcover

Women Leading Education Across the Continents: Sharing the Spirit, Fanning the Flame is a compendium of research and practice in K-12 and higher education worldwide. These writings were first presented in Rome at a July 2007 conference co-sponsored by AASA.


The central theme addresses the situation of women in education, using comparative gender research. The book takes an integrative approach of quantitative and qualitative research. Among the questions addressed are these: What is the status of women in education leadership positions across continents? How have the life experiences of conference participants influenced their life and professional leadership? How do women navigate the cultural constraints to become leaders? What access do girls have to education? What are the primary issues within leadership training programs that prevent or encourage diversity and gender equity?

The book is thought-provoking and provides purposeful reflection from a world of scholars working together to promote social justice. Their work is also inspirational. It should be read by female leaders who possess a deep passion for education.

Reviewed by Diane E. Reed, co-director, graduate educational leadership program, St. John Fisher College, Rochester, N.Y.