Opting Out

Opting Out - Sociology 130 March 20, 2008 Opting Out?...

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Sociology 130 March 20, 2008 Opting Out? Pamela Stone (Hunter College) -In-dept interviews with 54 elite, professional, mothers who dropped out of the work force -Most dropped out for work related reasons, rather than family reasons Modern workplace is inflexible and not conducive to the family-work combination -Not their choice, but a choice gap -Not “traditional” motivations Post-feminist attitudes about equality Reason #1: Care work -Parenting is still equated with “mothering” Mother dominant family figure, holding family together -Increasing cultural standards of parenting intensity -Belief that mothers’ care is better than professionals’ -Result: “reassessed priorities” Raising children overcame other obligations Is this a “return to traditionalism”? o Stone views the women’s rationale as different Reason # 2: Husbands -Previous to dropping out, the wives were deferring to his career -Husbands’ high earning made the “choice” reasonable, and possible Due to the options they had -Husbands supported their wives quitting
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Opting Out - Sociology 130 March 20, 2008 Opting Out?...

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