Combining marriage and children with paid work : changes across cohorts in Italy and Britain
Title: Combining marriage and children with paid work : changes across cohorts in Italy and Britain
Author: SOLERA, Cristina
Citation: Journal of comparative family studies, 2009, Vol. 40, No. 4, pp. 635-659
ISSN: 0047-2328; 1929-9850
This study compares two countries: Italy and Britain. It examines data from the BHPS and the ILFI up to 2005 and uses event history models to investigate changes across four successive birth cohorts in the effect of family responsibilities on women's transitions between paid market work and unpaid family-care work from the time women leave full-time education until they are in their forties. My findings show that in both countries women's attachment to paid work has increased and that education and/or class have marked and still mark the divide, as predicted by human capital theory. However, in line with culturalist and institutional approaches, it also emerges that the effect of motherhood is, ceteris paribus, stronger in a residualist-liberal welfare regime like the British one. In Italy, where demand for labour is relatively low, gender role norms are quite traditional, reconciliation policies are weak but largely compensated by intergenerational and kinship solidarity, fewer women enter paid work, but when they do, fewer women interrupt when becoming wives or mothers.
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