What Division of Labor Do University Students Expect in Their Future Lives? Divergences and Communalities of Female and Male Students

What Division of Labor Do University Students Expect in Their Future Lives? Divergences and... Gender inequality is embedded in men’s greater labor force participation and women’s greater assumption of domestic roles. These inequalities are at the same time rooted in people’s projections about their future lives, which influence future behaviors and values. The current research analyzes factors that influence these projections about the gender division of labor. A sample of 230 male and female Spanish university students reported their expectations about gender equality in their own future life. Data are also presented from 113 female university students from the United States, who completed the same measures. In an experimental design, these participants were also assigned to envision a possible future self as a married parent who was employed full-time, part-time, or not at all and whose educational attainment was a bachelor’s degree or an advanced degree. When reporting expectations for their own future lives, more female than male Spanish participants expected part-time work, marriage, and parenthood. In most aspects, the experimental conditions, with their assignments to particular future situations, yielded the same expectations for the male and female participants. Notably, as hypothesized, participants of both sexes estimated that greater employment would enhance their attainment of career and respect goals but compromise family goals. We discuss the effects of employment expectations on the division of labor and gender equality, and additionally provide a cross-cultural interpretation of the differences observed between Spain and the United States. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Sex Roles Springer Journals

What Division of Labor Do University Students Expect in Their Future Lives? Divergences and Communalities of Female and Male Students

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Publisher
Springer Journals
Copyright
Copyright © 2015 by Springer Science+Business Media New York
Subject
Psychology; Gender Studies; Sociology, general; Medicine/Public Health, general
ISSN
0360-0025
eISSN
1573-2762
D.O.I.
10.1007/s11199-015-0532-7
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Gender inequality is embedded in men’s greater labor force participation and women’s greater assumption of domestic roles. These inequalities are at the same time rooted in people’s projections about their future lives, which influence future behaviors and values. The current research analyzes factors that influence these projections about the gender division of labor. A sample of 230 male and female Spanish university students reported their expectations about gender equality in their own future life. Data are also presented from 113 female university students from the United States, who completed the same measures. In an experimental design, these participants were also assigned to envision a possible future self as a married parent who was employed full-time, part-time, or not at all and whose educational attainment was a bachelor’s degree or an advanced degree. When reporting expectations for their own future lives, more female than male Spanish participants expected part-time work, marriage, and parenthood. In most aspects, the experimental conditions, with their assignments to particular future situations, yielded the same expectations for the male and female participants. Notably, as hypothesized, participants of both sexes estimated that greater employment would enhance their attainment of career and respect goals but compromise family goals. We discuss the effects of employment expectations on the division of labor and gender equality, and additionally provide a cross-cultural interpretation of the differences observed between Spain and the United States.

Journal

Sex RolesSpringer Journals

Published: Aug 16, 2015

References

  • What will I be? Exploring gender differences in near and distant possible selves
    Brown, E. R.; Diekman, A. B.
  • Youth unemployment rate and impact of financial crises
    Choudhry, M. T.; Marelli, E.; Signorelli, M.
  • Do young women expect gender equality in their future lives? An answer from a possible selves experiment
    Fetterolf, J. C.; Eagly, A. H.

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