Sex Roles

, Volume 36, Issue 3–4, pp 171–193 | Cite as

The production of gender among Black and White women and men: The case of household labor

  • Daphne John
  • Beth Anne Shelton


Using the National Survey of Families and Households (N = 13,017; 11.09% Black, 79.99% White), we compare the household labor time of Black and White women and men, and assess the extent to which the time constraint, relative resource, and ideology explanations account for racial and gender differences in housework time. We find that although time constraint, relative resource, and ideology explanations account for some of the variation in housework time, they do not account for all of the gender and racial differences. We also find that paid work and housework trade off differently for Black men than for White men and also for women and men. Finally, a variety of relative resource, time constraint, and ideology factors are associated differently with women’s and men’s housework time. We argue that our findings lend support to the production of gender approach to understanding the division of household labor and that this approach can be used to help us understand racial differences in housework time as well.


White Woman Black Woman Gender Role Attitude Household Labor Relative Resource 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1997

Authors and Affiliations

  • Daphne John
    • 1
  • Beth Anne Shelton
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of SociologyOberlin CollegeOberlin
  2. 2.The University of Texas at ArlingtonUSA

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