Opting Out?

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


This chapter describes cohort changes in employment patterns of college-educated professional and managerial women in the United States from 1960 to 2010 and evaluates whether recent cohorts are increasingly "opting out" of paid employment. Cohort change can be thought of as having two sources: changes in the composition of the population and changes in the behavior of subgroups of the population. This chapter examines changes in the composition of cohorts and in the behavior of subgroups within and across cohorts. Leslie Whittington, Susan Averett, and Donna Anderson examine postpartum employment patterns among married mothers using data from the Panel Study of Income Dynamics from 1968 to 1992. The chapter examines three measures of employment by birth cohorts: labor force participation, full-time, year-round employment, and working more than fifty hours per week. The historical gender composition or sex-type of an occupation captures a broad array of factors that may influence employment rates, including prestige, working conditions, and salary.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationInequality in the 21st Century
Subtitle of host publicationA Reader
PublisherTaylor and Francis
Number of pages9
ISBN (Electronic)9780429968372
ISBN (Print)9780429499821
StatePublished - Jan 1 2018

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Social Sciences


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