The notion that women do more housework than men has gotten more credibility with a study from George Mason University finding that married men do less housework than men who are live-in boyfriends.
Sociologist Shannon Davis examined data from more than 17,000 people in 28 countries to complete the study which was published in the Journal of Family Issues. According to Davis, the key finding of the study is that it suggests the institution of marriage changes the division of labor. Couples with an egalitarian view on gender — seeing men and women as equal — are more likely to divide the household chores equally. However, in married relationships, even if an egalitarian viewpoint is present, men still report doing less housework than their wives.
"Marriage as an institution seems to have a traditionalizing effect on couples — even couples who see men and women as equal," said Davis. While the researchers did not follow cohabitating couples over time to see if their division of housework changed after marriage, their study provides a "snapshot" in time of couples all over the world.
"Our research suggests that couples across many countries are influenced by similar factors when deciding how to divide the housework," Davis noted. "It's the way the society has defined what being married means, the institution itself, that affects behavior."
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Source: George Mason University