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Double burden is a term describing the workload of women and men who work to earn money, but also have responsibility for unpaid, domestic labor.[1] This phenomenon is also known as the "second shift," as in Arlie Hochschild's book of the same name.

In heterosexual couples where both partners have paid jobs, the woman often spends significantly more time on household chore and caring work, such as childrearing or care for the sick, than the male partner. Likewise, the man often spends significantly more time on paid work, than the female partner. This outcome is determined in large part by gender roles. Cathy Young argues that rather than men being uninterested in child-rearing resulting in an unequal burden for women, women barring men from taking on paternal responsibilities may sometimes be at fault.[2]

Another challenge faced by individuals with a double burden is switching from the business economy mindset, oriented around monetary profits and personal competitiveness, to the "uneconomical" service mindset, oriented around caring for others' needs, during the same day.

See also


  1. ^ Phyllis Moen (1989). Working Parents. University of Wisconsin Press. p. 4. ISBN 0299121046.  
  2. ^ The mama lion at the gate -

Further reading

  • Barbara Engel (2004). "Russia and the Soviet Union". in Bonnie G. Smith. Women's History in Global Perspective. University of Illinois Press. p. 171. ISBN 0252029909.  


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