Social Indicators Research

, Volume 112, Issue 1, pp 69–81 | Cite as

The Impact of Socioeconomic Status on Life Satisfaction

  • Mina DaraeiEmail author
  • Artmiz Mohajery


The stratification system in India has resulted in the socioeconomic inequality in society and defines women domestic workers as one of the lowest segments of society. This qualitative and quantitative study aims at describing the problems of female domestic workers, the relationship of their employers with them, and exploring the impact of socioeconomic status mainly, occupation, education, and income on life satisfaction. We used ethnographic observation and in-depth interview over a 4 year period in Mysore (a city in the south of India). Furthermore, our quantitative research was guided by convenience sampling technique with selecting 125 (65 domestic workers, 60 employers). We prepared a structured questionnaire for gathering demographic information, i.e. age, education, marital status, occupation, and religion. To measure the degree of life satisfaction, we administered Satisfaction with Life Scale (Diener et al. J Person Assess 49(1):71–75, 1985). The data were collected during September and October 2011. The hypotheses were tested by applying Pearson correlation, regression, and t test (SPSS, version 18). The results of our observation and interview indicate that domestic workers suffer from various problems inside and outside their homes. The relationship between domestic workers and employers is a master–servant relationship. Domestic workers remain as an unorganized job group though in 2004 the Karnataka Minimum Wage Act was passed. Our quantitative findings reveal that there is a positive correlation between socioeconomic status and life satisfaction. This type of study displays that enacting law is not sufficient; it necessitates implementing and monitoring properly. This study suggests measures for supporting female domestic workers.


Socioeconomic status (SES) Domestic workers’ problems Employers Satisfaction with life scale (SWLS) 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Social WorkUniversity of MysoreMysoreIndia
  2. 2.International School of Information and ManagementUniversity of MysoreMysoreIndia

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