Work and Family in the 1990s



This review highlights four themes emerging from the work and family literature of the 1990s. The first theme evolves from the historical legacy of the maternal employment literature with its focus on children's well-being. The second theme, work socialization, is based on the premise that occupational conditions, such as autonomy and complexity, shape the values of workers who in turn generalize these lessons off the job. Research on work stress, the third theme, explores how experiences of short- and long-term stress at work make their mark on workers' behavior and well-being off the job. Finally, the multiple roles literature focuses on how individuals balance roles, such as parent, spouse, and worker, and the consequences for health and family relationships. In addition to these four major themes, advances in work and family policy initiatives over the past decade are discussed. Suggestions for future research focus on addressing issues of causality, attending to the complexity of social contexts, linking research to policy, and developing interdisciplinary theories and research designs.