Gender, Time, and Reduced Work

By Cynthia Negrey

Subjects: Women's Studies
Series: SUNY series in the Sociology of Work and Organizations
Paperback : 9780791414088, 148 pages, July 1993
Hardcover : 9780791414071, 148 pages, July 1993

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Table of contents

List of Tables

One The Best of Both Worlds?
A Comment on Terminology
A Context for Understanding Reduced Work
Post-Industrialism and Reduced Work
Occupational Sex Segregation and Reduced Work
Reduced Work, Personal Autonomy, and Quality of Life
Two - Reduced Work In Perspective
Labor Market Theories
Work Hours and Work Schedules
The Gender Division of Labor in the Household
Three - How the Study was Done
Sample Construction and Characteristics
The Part-Time Workers
The Temporaries
The Job Sharers
The Work Sharers
Four - The Part-Time Workers
Joining the Part-Time Workforce
Irregular Work Schedules
Irregular Work Schedules and Time Off the Job
Regular Work Schedules
Regular Work Schedules and Time Off the Job
Summary and Conclusion
Five - The Temporaries
Seeking Temporary Employment
Regular Work Schedules
Regular Work Schedules and Time Off the Job
Intermittent Temporary Work
Intermittent Work and Time Off the Job
Summary and Conclusion
Six - The Job Sharers
Becoming a Job Sharer
Job Sharers' Work Schedules
Job Sharing and Time Off the Job
Balancing Employment and Child Care
Relieving the Double Burden
Time Left Over for Recreation
Making Time for Community Service
Summary and Conclusion
Seven - The Work Sharers
Choosing Unemployment
Work Schedules Left Behind
Work Sharing and Time Off the Job
Household Projects
Interpersonal Relationships
Community Service
Summary and Conclusion
Eight - The Promise and Limits of Reduced Work
Four Types of Reduced Work Compared
Gender and Reduced Work Reconsidered
Reduced Work and Community



This book compares and analyzes different forms of reduced work: conventional part-time employment, temporary employment, job sharing, and work sharing. Through interviews, workers reveal their experiences with reduced work, particularly the extent to which they control their work schedules, how they use their time off, and whether they feel that reduced work improves or diminishes their quality of life.

Negrey challenges the notions that reduced work is homogenous, and that it is uniformly positive (or negative) in its consequences for workers. She concludes that reduced work is sex-segregated in ways similar to full-time work, and, as it currently exists, reinforces unequal gender relations rather than contests them.

Cynthia Negrey is Assistant Professor of Sociology at the University of Louisville, Kentucky.


"Negrey's use of qualitative methods is excellent, as are her insights about gender and the double burden, the ideology of motherhood, cultural notions of masculinity, and the nature of housework and gender. " — Anne Statham, University of Wisconsin