The Allocation of Housework: Extending the Gender Display Approach
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- Vijayasiri, G. Gend. Issues (2011) 28: 155. doi:10.1007/s12147-011-9103-6
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The current study attempts a simultaneous testing of economic models, the gender display perspective, and gender-deviance neutralization hypothesis that attempt to explain present housework arrangements between men and women. The study uses fixed effects models that can produce more robust coefficients than the standard regression models generally used in cross-sectional designs. The findings in the study reveal the inadequacy of economic models and the gender display theory to account for men’s housework behavior. The study introduces the marital contract hypothesis as an alternative theoretical framework for explaining men’s housework behavior. According to the study, what is crucial for achieving housework parity is changes in women’s gender related attitudes and their economic and labor market standing and orientation to paid work. The study suggests that attempting to change men’s gender beliefs can do little to achieve the goal of housework parity.