Department of Sociology, 155 Hamilton Hall CB#3210, Chapel Hill, NC 27599-3210.
Headed Toward Equality? Housework Change in Comparative Perspective
Version of Record online: 15 JUL 2011
Copyright © National Council on Family Relations, 2011
Journal of Marriage and Family
Volume 73, Issue 4, pages 832–844, August 2011
How to Cite
Geist, C. and Cohen, P. N. (2011), Headed Toward Equality? Housework Change in Comparative Perspective. Journal of Marriage and Family, 73: 832–844. doi: 10.1111/j.1741-3737.2011.00850.x
This article was edited by Suzanne Bianchi.
- Issue online: 15 JUL 2011
- Version of Record online: 15 JUL 2011
- fairness and equality;
- housework/division of labor;
- social context;
- social trends/social change
This paper examines gendered housework in the larger context of comparative social change, asking specifically whether cross-national differences in domestic labor patterns converge over time. Our analysis of data from 13 countries (N = 11,065) from the 1994 and 2002 International Social Survey Program (ISSP) confirmed that social context matters in shaping couples' division of labor at home, but also showed that context affects patterns of change. Our results suggested that, compared to the most egalitarian countries, the shift in housework patterns was greatest among the most traditional countries. This provides support for the thesis of cultural convergence, but the evidence did not suggest that such convergence will lead to complete equality in the foreseeable future.