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Intro to Women's and Gender Studies, Week 14 Notes

by: Nicole Sanacore

Intro to Women's and Gender Studies, Week 14 Notes WGST 1101 - 001

Marketplace > University of North Carolina - Charlotte > Women and Gender studies > WGST 1101 - 001 > Intro to Women s and Gender Studies Week 14 Notes
Nicole Sanacore
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Notes from the 14th week's (April 13) lecture.
Intro to Women's Studies
Kelly Anne Finley
Class Notes
marriage, institution
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This 5 page Class Notes was uploaded by Nicole Sanacore on Sunday April 17, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to WGST 1101 - 001 at University of North Carolina - Charlotte taught by Kelly Anne Finley in Fall 2015. Since its upload, it has received 41 views. For similar materials see Intro to Women's Studies in Women and Gender studies at University of North Carolina - Charlotte.


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Date Created: 04/17/16
WGST 1101 – April 13 Look through the Lens of “Marriage” 1. History of definition of “marriage” 2. Legacy of “women as property” 3. The new “single woman” and her power 4. New relationships 5. Modern marriage myths Marriage is a political, cultural, and economic institution The concept of “marriage” has evolved over centuries  No one static cultural or legal definition of “marriage”  Ancient Romans only allowed top 1/3 of classes to marry  Early Christianity forbade women and men to marry  In the U.S., women and children within marriage were property of the husband  Slaves, Native Americans, and Asians in the U.S. were not allowed to marry  Loving v. Virginia (1967) forced all states to stop discriminating against marriage based upon race Obergefell v. Hodges/Ohio (2015)  Legalized marriage between two people of the same sex  14 Amendment provides equal protection under the law Two “Marriages”  Ceremonial marriage – performed within a place of worship, according to tribal customs and/or procedures of tradition  Legal marriage (license/contact issued by States) – the legal union of two people. Once a couple is married, their rights and responsibilities toward one another concerning property and support are defined by the laws of the state in which they live Wife = Civilly Dead  Before, a female went from: daughter ~ wife ~ mother ~ widow coverture – legal doctrine stipulated that a married woman had no separate legal existence from her husband  dependent of husband (like a child or slave)  could not own property, control earnings, or make contracts  had no custody of children, even as widows A New Role = “Single Woman”? Now most go from… daughter ~ single woman ~ wife and/or mother Single Woman = Emerging Power  single women comprise the fastest-growing segment of the American population, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, with 42% of women 18 an older never married, divorced, or widowed  according to the National Association of Realtors, single women now comprise the second largest group of homebuyers, just after married couples  Employment Policy Foundation found that single women who live alone and have full- time jobs earn 28 cents more than similarly-situated men Significance of the Women’s Vote  women have voted in higher numbers than men in every election since 1980  women were 56% of the vote for President Obama in 2008  2012 saw the largest gender gap in voting to date (meaning women voted more for one candidate while men for the other)  in 2012, women were 53% of voters = women decided the outcome of the election Is Everyone “Getting Married”?  in 2014, the number of people who live alone = 28% of all households (up from 17% in 1970)  For every 100 unmarried women, there are 88 unmarried men  56.4% of the female population are “unmarried” Living Together  cohabitation – living together as or as if husband and wife. In recent years, this concept has expanded to include any two partners who have integrated their residence, property, and daily lives o many Americans do not identify as “single” because they are parents, have partners, or are widowed o increase in multi-generational households (16% of households)  the number of unmarried couples living together increased 88% between 1990 and 2007  12.8% of unmarried partners report to be same-sex couples. 87% report to be opposite- sex couples Age of first “marriage” in the U.S.  by age 30, 75% of women in the U.S. have been/are married  median age of first marriage for women is 25.9  median age of first marriage for men is 28.7 Impact of Marriage: the Myths and the Facts  Fact: Many studies have shown that the arrival of the first baby commonly has the effect of pushing the mother and father farther apart, and bringing stress to the marriage o couples with children have a slightly lower rate of divorce than childless couples o one factor of success in couples is when women felt household duties were equally divided  Fact: a recent study based on marriage rates in the mid-1990s concluded that today’s women college graduates are more likely to marry than their non-college peers, despite their older age at first marriage. This is a change from the past when women with more education were less likely to marriage  Fact: new research shows that is depends upon the age of cohabitation, with couples under 30 showing higher rate of divorce while those over 30 show neutral effect Big Wedding = Big Love?  Fact: Across income levels, the more a couple spends on their wedding, the shorter their marriage  average wedding cost in America = $30,000  the wedding industry is a $55 billion/year business  presence of family at wedding increases longevity of marriage Culture of Heteronormativity 1. assumption of heterosexuality 2. cultural bias in favor of opposite-sex relationships 3. hyper-representation and idealization of young heterosexuality 4. under-representation of same-sex and other hetero relationships Fact: according to a large-scale national study, married/partnered people have both more and better sex than do their unmarried counterparts. Not only do they have sex more often but they enjoy it more, physically and emotional Top Predictors of Divorce 1. age at marriage – 50-75% chance if married under age 30 2. living together before marriage 3. your parents were divorced 4. pregnant before marriage 5. not married long (most end by the 15 year) 6. your income Divorce and Economic Impact  median duration of marriage is 7.2 years  median age of divorce for women is 33.2 and 35.6 for men  50% of new marriages end in divorce, 60% of remarriages end in divorce  men experience a 28% increase in standard of living after divorce  25% of women fall into poverty within 5 years of divorce Money and Marriage  married people have more than twice as much money, on average, as unmarried people. Married people save more while enjoying some economies of scale  married men also earn up to 26% more than single men  similarly, married women earn more than unmarried women, but only if they have no children o married women, no kids = $.90 to $1.00 o married women, kids = $.70 to $1.00 o average woman = $.77 to $1.00 Who Makes the Most? 1. married man (stay-at-home wife, kids) 2. married man (married to a career woman, no kids) 3. married career woman (no kids) 4. single woman (no kids) 5. single man (no kids) Who Makes the Least? 1. divorced, single mothers 2. married, career woman (with kids) Women’s 3 Shifts = Two at No Pay  first shift – job/career in which monetary wage is earned (40 hrs/week)  second shift – job at home caring for and managing children, household social and physical lives of household members (27 hrs/week)  third shift – time and money spent on “looking” appropriate to participate in first shift jobs and second shift activities (??) The New Facts = Who Does What? 1. employed, married mothers still do more housework and childcare as compared to married fathers (27.7 hours/week vs. 11.1) 2. married fathers are doing more than previous generations (from 4 hr/wk in 1965, 7 hr/wk in 1985, to 11.1 in 2010) Absent Working Mom Myth  modern working mothers have increased the amount of time they spend with their kids  further, they have increase quality of time with kids = “intensive parenting” = investing in intellectual development of child  how have mothers accomplished this? by giving up sleep and leisure time Slacker Dad Myth  68% of working dads experience conflicts with their employers and duties as a parent  65% of fathers believe care should be equal  30% report actual equality in caregiving Why the Inequity?  why? = unemployed men do less housework than women who work full-time


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