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Outsourcing the Gender Factory: Living Arrangements and Service Expenditures on Female and Male Tasks

Citation

de Ruijter, Esther; Treas, Judith K.; & Cohen, Philip N. (2005). Outsourcing the Gender Factory: Living Arrangements and Service Expenditures on Female and Male Tasks. Social Forces, 84(1), 305-322.

Abstract

Using data from the U.S. Consumer Expenditure Survey 1998, this study analyzes how much money different types of households spend for domestic services on “female” and “male” tasks.We test alternative hypotheses based on economic and sociological theories of
gender differentiation. Contrary to arguments that marriage lowers the risk to one partner of specializing in housework, we find no differences in service expenditures between cohabiting and married couples. Consistent with gender production arguments that the household context shapes behavior, single women outspend couples across the board. Single men, however, reveal spending behavior more consistent with gender socialization. Comparing single men and single women points to the gendered nature of the tasks as an important aspect of domestic service expenditures.

URL

http://dx.doi.org/10.1353/sof.2005.0124

Reference Type

Journal Article

Year Published

2005

Journal Title

Social Forces

Author(s)

de Ruijter, Esther
Treas, Judith K.
Cohen, Philip N.