The effect of the household division of labor on the income of men and women
DuPuis, Laura Bruemmer
AdvisorWright, David W.
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The gender wage gap still exists, with women earning about 73% of what men earn. One factor that has been recently looked at as contributing to this earnings gap is household labor. Women are still completing the majority of household labor despite cultural trends otherwise. Traditionally, there have been three schools of thought in income determination. The Individual model argues that individuals make investments in human capital through education and experience which increases their productivity, and therefore their attractiveness to potential employers. Employers pay higher premiums for more valuable employees. The Structural model argues that there is a hierarchy of positions in the economic structure, each with a preset range of income. An individual's position in the hierarchy determines their income. Researchers from a Gender model of income determination argue that discrimination, harassment, and the unequal treatment of women workers force women into lower paying jobs. This study combines the three models of income determination into the alternative model of income determination, with household labor as a component of the Gender model. The 2004 American Time Use Survey (ATUS) was used to test hypotheses of income determination. The full alternative model explained 56% of the variance in income (adjusted R squared .562). Multiple regression results showed that household labor was not a major factor in the variation between men and women’s income, going against the bulk of the previous literature. Implications for findings were discussed.
Thesis (M.A.)--Wichita State University, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, Dept. of Sociology.