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The Birth Of The Housewife In Contemporary Asia: New Mothers In The Era Of Globalization

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Chapter Summary

This chapter illuminates the transformation of gender roles in East and Southeast Asia, areas of strong economic development. Of central concern to us was the question of whether a pattern of gender division of labor, with the husband as the "bread-winner" or money-earner and the wife as the homemaker, would emerge in these societies, as it has in other modern societies. An unexpected discovery of this investigation, however, was the significant number of "housewives" we encountered in societies of Types 1 and 2 where mothers of small children continue to work. The chapter considers "housewifization" in the three Type 1 and 2 societies by paying fresh attention to the cases of housewives encountered in these regions. The trends of housewifization of women require both individuals and governments in Asia to reconsider their views of family and gender in order to construct a better modernity in the era of globalization.

Keywords: gender roles; globalization; housewives; mothers



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