This global survey starts from the assumption that the significant transformations in women's lives deserve to be fully documented and interpreted. Janet Mancini Billson and Carlyn Fluehr-Lobban tackle the complexities of social change by using data from countries in every world region to illustrate the most critical challenges that women faced during the last century - challenges that are also likely to shape the 21st century. Global knowledge and feminism dovetailed in the 20th century, fed by international air travel, telecommunications, the internet, and a growing awareness that solving female oppression would improve the lot of all humankind. The authors therefore adopt a strong international, comparative, cross-cultural, and feminist framework that uncovers the fundamental processes that promote, sustain, or degrade the female condition. At the heart of Female Well-Being are case studies written by country teams of scholars, educators, and policy analysts, in Canada, The United States, Colombia, Iceland, the United Kingdom, Croatia, Japan, Bangladesh, Thailand, South Africa, and Sudan. Female well-being is measured by analysing trends in infant mortality, maternal mortality, literacy, life expectancy, education, work, income, family structure, and political power. These trends are contextualised in the light of the century's major events, legislative initiatives, social policies, and leadership, to illustrate the processes that enhance, sustain, or detract from the female condition. This book will be a critical resource for academics, development experts and policy analysts.