Bianchi_JMF_2010 - SUZANNE M. BIANCHI University of...

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SUZANNE M. BIANCHI University of California, Los Angeles MELISSA A. MILKIE University of Maryland* Work and Family Research in the First Decade of the 21st Century Scholarship on work and family topics expanded in scope and coverage during the 2000 – 2010 decade, spurred by an increased diversity of workplaces and of families, by methodological innovations, and by the growth of communities of scholars focused on the work-family nexus. We discuss these developments as the backdrop for emergent work-family research on six central topics: (a) gender, time, and the division of labor in the home; (b) paid work: too much or too little; (c) maternal employment and child outcomes; (d) work-family conFict; (e) work, family, stress, and health; and (f) work-family policy. We conclude with a discussion of trends important for research and suggestions about future directions in the work-family arena. The intersection of family care and paid work was the subject of innovative research dur- ing the ±rst decade of the 21st century and also continued to be a hot public policy issue. Consider the U.S. presidential campaign of 2008, which brought to the fore sensitive cul- tural issues about gender, parenting, marriage, Department of Sociology, University of California, Los Angeles, Box 951551, 264 Haines Hall, Los Angeles, CA 90095-1551 ( *Department of Sociology, University of Maryland, 2112 Art-Sociology Bldg., College Park, MD 20742 ( Key Words: family conFict, gender, paid work, time use, unpaid family work, work family balance. and work across the life course. The Repub- lican vice presidential candidate, Sarah Palin, had a pregnant teenager and a special needs infant among her ±ve children at the same time as she held a highly demanding job as gover- nor of the state of Alaska. Michelle Obama, a lawyer and mother of two young daughters, left her high-powered career to campaign for her husband. Hillary Clinton, a U.S. senator and also a wife and mother, sought the presidency and assumed the visible position of secretary of state. Men’s lives, too, evoked work and family intersection issues: Vice President Joseph Biden became a single parent of young sons when he ±rst embarked on his Senate career because of a tragic car accident that killed his wife. He com- muted daily by train between Washington and his home in Delaware so that he could return each night to his children. President Barack Obama, raised ±rst by his single mother, then also a stepfather, and later by his grandparents, had a background that made clear that work and fam- ily challenges extended to all types of families, not just two-parent, dual-earner families. Scholarship on work and family topics, ini- tially narrowly focused on ‘‘working moth- ers’’ (Perry-Jenkins, Repetti, & Crouter, 2000), expanded in scope and coverage during the 2000 – 2010 decade. Three developments were important: demographic trends such as the increasing diversity of families and workplaces and the stagnation of mothers’ labor force participation, methodological innovations such
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This note was uploaded on 11/10/2011 for the course SOCIOLOGY 920:272 taught by Professor Mouzon during the Fall '09 term at Rutgers.

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Bianchi_JMF_2010 - SUZANNE M. BIANCHI University of...

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