Expectations for Traditional Family Roles: Palestinian Adolescents in the West Bank and Gaza
- Cite this article as:
- Fronk, C., Huntington, R.L. & Chadwick, B.A. Sex Roles (1999) 41: 705. doi:10.1023/A:1018868010058
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This study explored the family role expectationsof 14- and 15-year-old Palestinian young men and womenliving in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. It wasanticipated that modernization, along with the youth's involvement in the intifada, thepopular uprising against Israeli occupation, hadfostered more liberal family role expectations among theyouth. The data were collected via questionnaire in1994-1995 from all of the ninth grade students attendingUnited Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) schoolsin the West Bank. The students completed the Arabicquestionnaire at school and took home questionnaires for their mothers and their fathers. In Gaza,samples of the ninth grade students attending UNRWAschools and of those attending schools operated by thePalestinian Ministry of Education were selected. The students' response rates were over 90%,while mothers' and fathers' exceeded 80%. Overall, datawere collected from 7,000 Palestinian families. Theresults revealed that, contrary to our expectation, Palestinian youth desire and anticipate havingtraditional families very similar to those of theirparents. Interestingly, intifada participation was notassociated with a decrease in support for traditional family roles. There were significantdifferences between the boys' and girls' perceptions offuture gender roles in Palestinian society. The youngwomen expressed more liberal attitudes towards women's roles and participation in society, while atthe same time supporting traditional familyroles.