Exam 3 Study Guide: Family: How Groups Handle Nature Detours on the road to equality:
o Why did women surpass men in attaining a higher education?
“Why has the gender integration of occupations slowed to a crawl?
∙ Gender Expectations: Why do male and females end up in different occupations?
∙ Many believe that the barriers preventing women from entering new fields has been dismantled, but that’s nIf you want to learn more check out condensed notes
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ot entirely true. Women were once increasingly entering male dominated fields but this growth has come to a stop. o “The slow but steady movement of women into formerly male-dominated occupations has tapered off, if not completely stopped, during the 1990s” (32). ∙ Most occupations remain skewed either towards men or women. Sociologists refer to this concentration of men and women in different jobs as the gender segregation of work. o “…a woman more often works next to other women than to men. Women remain crowded in certain jobs such as secretaries administrative assistants (99 percent female), child care workers (98 percent females) or registered nurses (93 percent)” (32). o “…male bastions are construction trades, such as carpenters, plumbers and electricians (3 percent female), mechanics and repairers (5 percent) and engineers (10 percent)” ∙ It’s true that some of the highest-status professions (law, medicine, and management) have experienced a large influx of women. But even so, there are still clear gender disparities. o “Few female managers have reached the highest echelons [ranks] of large corporations, and women middle-managers are less likely than their male counterparts to have authority over staff and budgets. Female lawyers are more likely to be found in family law or working for the government than practicing in the more lucrative [profitable] specializations at major firms. And female physicians are more likely to specialize in pediatrics or family practice than surgery or anesthesiology…” Although there are more women in high status occupations, there is still evident gender disparity. Women are less likely to be promoted, have less power than their male counterparts, and are found in the “lesser” specializations that don’t make as much money. ∙ In Summary: “Men and women are segregated by occupation, by firms within occupation, and by jobs and specializations within firms. There are ‘men’s jobs’ and ‘women’s jobs’ at all levels of education skills, and experience, and at each level, the women’s jobs tend to be paid less” (33). ∙ Furthermore, female dominated fields pay less even when experience, qualifications, and education are taken into account. This wealth disparity is shown by comparing jobs with similar qualifications…o “Women are 50 percent of bus drivers but only 3 percent of railroad conductors. Women are 71 percent of accountants and auditors but only 29 percent of securities and financial services sale representatives. Women are 88 percent of dressmakers but only 22 percent of upholsters. In each of these cases, the male occupation pays more than the female one…despite good intentions, many jobs are not truly open to everyone” (33). ∙ Gender Expectations: Why do male and females end up in different occupations? Sociologists tend to view gender roles as social conventions rather than a natural phenomenon o People are taught to distinguish male and female work like they are taught to distinguish from right and wrong. o “Young girls may no longer be encouraged to stay home, but now many are encouraged to work in ‘suitable’ jobs that emphasize helping others. Ideals pressed on boys include abstract reasoning, competitive prowess in sports and business, tinkering with things and financial success” (34). o Females working in a masculine field raises questions about a women’s femininity. For example, female marines may feel the need to show how tough they are on the job, but also how feminine they are off the job. o Males working as nurses respond to their masculinity being questioned by highlighting the heroic aspects of nursing. o Women also have fewer connections and networks that would allow them to enter male dominated fields. “They often lack the co-worker support necessary to succeed. They face job tasks and hours that assume a male breadwinner with a supportive stay at home wife. And their family and friends are often dubious [hesitant] or hostile to a new or unconventional occupation” (35). “…excessive hours in a number of demanding fields limit the opportunities of those with parental and other caregiving obligations, especially mothers…accentuating the strain on women” ∙ Gender Distinctions can also be flexible: History proves this…in WWII, while men were away at war, women increasingly took on male occupations by filling up seats in medical schools and taking on manufacturing jobs. The media even helped with this by stressing how the required skills for these jobs were similar to the domestic talents of women. o 1960: Increase in gender integration. young women switched from education to medicine, business, and other fields as professionals “These examples suggest that the gender stereotypes with which women grow up do not prevent them from seizing new opportunities as they become available” (37). o 1980: was a period of great energy and optimism for research and policy on gender segregation. There was an idea of comparable work: where pay should be equalized not only for the same work, but for comparable work as well. Women continued to enter professional fields. Women’s entry into professional fields helped other women who remained in female fields (like nursing and education since they experienced shortages) by stimulating higher wages o 1990: progress hit the ground. There was little mixing with occupations. “Why has the gender integration of occupations slowed to a crawl? A longer view suggests that this stability is typical and it is the unusual changes of the 1970’s and 1980’s that need to be explained” (38). Women have shifted to seeking high education in order to achieve economic independence. ∙ Education: o “Women first surpassed men in obtaining bachelor’s degrees in 1982, and the gap continues to widen” (38). o Why did women surpass men in attaining a higher education? And how did they do it so quickly? The rise in education is likely linked to gender segregation in several ways. 1. Women knew that the low wages they faced in unskilled work did NOT provide a living wage. ∙ Even when men and women had the same level of education, MEN still made more money. Even male high-school drop outs made more than female drop outs! Men made living wages, and women didn’t. Women couldn’t survive with just a high school diploma so they saw that it was more pressing for them to pursue a higher education. 2. Women felt that if they pursued a higher education, it would protect them against hiring discrimination. ∙ “If a pharmacy occupation requires a master’s degree, women with such a diploma can expect that they will be given serious consideration” (39). 3. The educational fields women receive degrees in are themselves segregated which limits how much money they can make. ∙ As mentioned above, female dominated fields tend to pay less. ∙ 2020: job projections will resemble current patterns. o What needs to change so that gender integration can rise again: “specific policy measures would include: vigorous enforcement of anti discrimination laws, training programs that target highly gender typed fields, and a broad reconsideration of the value of women’s work, especially caregiving work. Restructuring of working time to make all jobs parent-friendly…so that responsible parents are not trapped in so called ‘mommy track’ positions of part-time jobs with no job security or employment benefits…policies that reduce the length of the work week…could reduce work-family conflict…reducing artificial gender barriers at work can improve economic efficiency while promoting gender equity. Recruiting more women into fields such as computer science and engineering could help to provide much needed talent in these area, while recruiting more men to be elementary school teachers would help solve…shortages” (40).