Salvaging Sisterhood: Supporting Career Women
Women and the Labor Market: the link grows stronger, by Susan Shank examines women and the emergence of their attachment to the labor market. This article takes a look at the labor market changes of women between the ages 25 and 54. Changes with these ages began throughout the post-World War II period and the rate of increase accelerated in the mid-1960’s (Shank, 1988). The author links the rapid changes to various social and economic changes that have occurred in the United States.
Historically women stayed home for the large part of their childbearing years, however during the first world war women entered the workforce after the GI’s returns women focused more on traditional family duties. After the Second World War far more women entered the workforce and even upon the return of the soldiers continued to stay in the workforce and those that did leave soon returned to work a few years later.
According to age women in the 45 to 54 lead the return to work postwar period. Rates for the 34 to 44 age group increased as well while 25 to 34 age group hardly changed at all. These were the postwar baby-boom years and most married women working outside the labor force because of their child and family responsibilities (Shank, 1988). In 1960 women of childbearing in large number numbers began to enter the labor market. The spike in women workforce participants showed a very sharp decline in birth rate during this time period as well. Women began to show greater interest in education and work as time progress and delayed traditional familial norms.
Black women had a much higher rate of activity in the workforce postwar than that of white women. The gap has since then narrowed by 1987 the rates for both whites and black women were similar. Hispanic women however were much less likely than black or white women to be apart of the workforce due to high birth rate, generally low educational attainment, and cultural roles that emphasize women’s home and family roles. Women who where married stayed outside the workforce much longer than those that were single especially with the emergence of divorce and single women pregnancies. In 1987, 79 percent of women under the age of 18 were in the labor force compared to 67 percent for women with children (Shank, 1988). Working women generally were working full time hours 35 hours or more per week, to support their families voluntarily while only 17 percent worked part time. Sixty-eight percent of women 25 to 54 worked for a full year and an additional 10 percent worked 40 to 49 weeks (Shank, 1988).
The article written in 1988 states that there will be a future spike in women’s participation in the workforce over the next decade is expected to increase 10 percentage points. I feel this article is an accurate picture of how I see the work force has changed and the picture of women today. Women have become more involved in the workforce, bill paying, as well as family management. This article interests me in terms of career and women because my significant other is the single working woman. From a personal perspective women planning a wedding and participate in pre marriage counseling, may try to examine and resolve some of their feelings about work and “women’s work”. Their partner may have some more traditional views about work while she love it and find herself consumed with the high of a fast-paced extremely full life. I recognize the strain of stretching oneself too thin and figuring out how to manage married life, the balance of spousal needs and her routine feelings of her independent self. Controversies have held back improvements for training new counselors and development of treatment systematic treatment procedures. In order to explore treatment protocols, the debate must be addressed to help validate the suggestions of the impact of mothers’ employment on family relationships. These consist of exploring the...
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