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Author: Hekeler, Richard W.
Resulting in 1 citation.
1. Hekeler, Richard W.
Labor Utilization of Married American Women
Ph.D. Dissertation, University of Chicago, 1983
Cohort(s): Mature Women
Publisher: UMI - University Microfilms, Bell and Howell Information and Learning
Keyword(s): Dual-Career Families; Employment; Racial Differences; Underemployment

The rise in labor force participation of married women in the post-war period has been noted and factors suggested for its existence. Scant attention has been paid to the adequacy of employment among married women, however. Hauser's Labor Utilization Framework and data from the NLS's cohort of Mature Women have been employed to determine the extent of underutilization among married women in the American labor force, as well as the effect on labor utilization of childcare responsibilities and several factors identified in past research as influential to labor force entry decisions. Four types of inadequate utilization are defined: underutilization by unemployment, involuntary part-time employment, low income, and a mismatch of education and the skills required of one's job. Over half of the sample were adequately employed and their percentage increased to 73.4 in 1977. The low income accounted for the bulk of inadequacy with unemployment, low hours, and mismatch ranked respectively. An analysis of bivariate associations indicated marked racial differences with nonwhites sharing the disadvantaged position. Nevertheless, high levels of adequate labor utilization were associated for both races with decreased family responsibilities, higher levels of education, and higher status occupations. Labor utilization was not differentiated by previous work experience or attitudes towards women's employment. For nonwhites, having a highly educated mother or one who held a white-collar position increased the proportion of those adequately employed to near equivalency with whites. Differences across maternal influence categories were absent for whites. Results from log-linear analyses indicated that the presence of young children in the household was the most important factor accounting for the observed variations in labor utilization. Occupation, race, and education ranked respectively. This research illuminates the significant pool of lost productivity represented by married women and suggests the importance of developing schemes to ease the conflict of mother and worker roles. Moreover, it highlights the severely handicapped position of nonwhites in the labor force and suggests that those who are able to escape their disadvantaged milieu by achieving higher levels of education will compete with whites on equal footing.
Bibliography Citation
Hekeler, Richard W. Labor Utilization of Married American Women. Ph.D. Dissertation, University of Chicago, 1983.