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Gender Deviance and Household Work: The Role of Occupation1

This article takes a new approach to gender and housework by identifying a new measure of gender deviance—work in gender-atypical occupations—and by arguing that men who do “women’s work” and women who do “men’s work” in the labor market may seek to neutralize their gender deviance by doing male- and female-typed work at home. Analysis of data from the National Survey of Families and Households and the 2003–7 waves of the American Time Use Survey shows that men who do “women’s work” in the market spend more time on male-typed housework relative to men in gender-balanced occupations and their wives spend more time on female-typed housework. Women in gender-atypical occupations also do more female-typed housework than women in gender-balanced occupations. The article provides clearer evidence about the important ways in which cultural conceptions of gender shape and are shaped by economic processes.