Understanding women’s working lives

Patton, Wendy A. (2013) Understanding women’s working lives. In Patton, Wendy A. (Ed.) Conceptualising Women's Working Lives : Moving the Boundaries of Discourse. Sense Publishers, Rotterdam, The Netherlands, pp. 3-22.

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The last 50 years have produced multiple changes in our understanding of the place of paid and unpaid work in women’s lives. A growing theoretical, research and practical literature attests to the attention being directed to the a broader understanding of women’s working lives. It is more than thirty years since the groundbreaking paper by Fitzgerald and Crites’ (1980) on the career psychology of women. Prior to that time women’s careers were seen as primarily home based or “in relation to” men’s careers. In 1975 Osipow had commented on the lack of usefulness of traditional theories of career behaviour for women in that several basic assumptions on which they were founded were not relevant. For example, traditional career theory is based on the assumption that an array of career choices is available to all individuals, who are in turn motivated to pursue their personal interests in making certain choices. A comment on the state of vocational psychology in relation to class made by Tyler in 1967 highlights the inadequacy of application to women: - "much of what we know about the stages through which an individual passes as he prepares to find his place in the world of work might appropriately be labelled the vocational development of white middle class males" (p. 62; original italics). Gilligan's (1979) classic article entitled "woman's place in man's life cycle" emphasised the restriction of many theories of psychology in understanding women's lives as they implicitly adopted male as norm and failed to account for the unique social and family situation of women and the related demands on them...

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ID Code: 59200
Item Type: Book Chapter
ISBN: 9789462092082
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY (160000) > SOCIOLOGY (160800)
Divisions: Current > Research Centres > Office of Education Research
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Education
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2013 Sense Publishers
Deposited On: 18 Apr 2013 21:55
Last Modified: 09 Jul 2013 20:48

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