Althoughan enormous research has been carried out about division of householdlabor, principally, scanty is known about how husbands, wives,children, maids and free-riders share their family work time across aarray of domestic tasks. What extricate couples, children, househelps and free-riders exhibiting specialization or segregation inhousehold tasks from those who divide tasks? Most families especiallyfocus on the paraphernalia of family power, time availability andgender role creed. In the late 1970s, African families exhibitedexceedingly sex-segregated family work patterns, where femalepartners and girl child contributed many hours to housework.
Myfamily consists of six, my father, mother, a house-help, uncle,brother and myself and the tasks is not apportioned equally (Wolf,87). My mother did virtually all of the monotonous inside choresrelated with cleaning and cooking, whereas my father spent most ofhis household work time paying bills, doing repairs, or doing outsidedomestic chores like taking out the trash or mowing the lawn. Myfather devotes to other forms of conventional housework, particularlyin the area of meal preparation over weekends, where my fatheraveraged just one hour each week in comparison to an average of overnine hours per week for my mum (Robinson 1988).
However,my father tends to minimize his input to gender-stereotyped choreslike grilling on the weekend, rather than inputting considerably tothe preparation of daily meals. Nowadays my father contributes lessthan a ten percent of the time spent in cleaning after meals orwashing dishes in the household (Wolf, 87). This behavior hasattributed by presence of house help who does most housecleaning.
Myfather is extremely unlikely to iron clothes or do laundry, averagingto just about seven hours per month in early stages of our childhood,in comparison to over seven hours per week for my mum. Generally, myfather contributes only about three hours per week to the mixed tasksof meal clean-up, laundry, cooking, and housecleaning, in comparisonto an average of almost twenty-eight hours per week for my mum(Robinson 1988). Currently, mum is employed, and does less houseworkthan before while the house maid does somewhat more.
Psychologicaldesolation is great in my mum because my father and uncle(free-rider) does little to help with household tasks. Not only domum and house help spend more hours on household chores than both men(my father and uncle), but they also likely to do the least pleasantduties, most of which are obligatory, implacable and performed inisolation. My father`s household chores, in variation, have tended tobe infrequent, and he focus his efforts on comparatively fun-likeactivities such as playing with my younger brother (Coltrane 2000Thompson and Walker 1989). My mother spends more time than my fatherin supervising, feeding and caring for us, but my father likephysical play.
At ourhome we do not own a washing machine (Beamish, 156). Therefore,washing is by hand. Today most our dishes, and laundry are done byhousemaid and mum chips in over the weekend and the event thehouse-help is off duty. As for me am not married, and my plans for myhousehold are a bit different from that of my parents. I intend to befair, by sharing households’ duties equally with my spouse.Furthermore, I will start early enough by showing my kids what tendlearn and be taking part in domestic chores as they grow up (Beamish,156).
When itcomes to contributing for the income that is used up in the house,most of us participate in the earning of income. Personally, I do apart time job when in school. This enables me to come up with extrapocket money for school events and other things school related. Inaddition to that, my parents also allow me to take part in theseactivities. The buy everything that I require to do this job andfinance my school activities so that the extra income can be used ininvestments.
Both ofmy parents are working so they both chip in when it comes to theaccumulation of funds. They have managed to provide what we all needfor our schooling as well as all other necessities that we require.My father contributes a larger part of the income that we use up inthe household. My mother works less hours than him, and is thereforeable to participate in household affairs more than my father is.
Mysmaller siblings are always expected to chip in when it comes todoing all the chores in the house, despite the presence of thehousemaid, so as to ensure that they gain as much experience in doingthis, as they would require. In order to ensure that they do notfight over who gets to do the chores, there is a duty roster that ismade for the entire household, and expected to be followed byeveryone.
Inshort, the housemaid contributes about fifty percent to thecompletion of household chores. In the event that she wasn’t therewe would still be able to complete the chores, however, seeing as weall have hectic schedules, her presence is necessary so as to enableus smooth things along. She mostly does the cleaning and cooking,leaving my siblings to do the very miniature jobs, like cleaning afew dishes, or arranging their books on the shelf, just to keep themoccupied, ,and to prevent them from leaving the householddisorganized.
I thinkthat making the children do chores is necessary so as to prevent themfrom being too disorganized or idle. It also makes them appreciatethe work done by the housemaid, making them learn to respect her aswell. The whole purpose of them contributing in the completion ofchores is so as to ensure that they become practical individuals infuture who will be respectful and able to do chores in the eventthat help is not around.
When itcomes to household duties, my father rarely ever contributes. Thisonly happens during social gatherings at our home, where he willgrill meat for the family, or assisting in making a salad. This isusually done as a bonding session where we all prepare the foodtogether. Everyone always has a miniature role to play in the puttingtogether of family events, and all these contributions are usuallycrucial for the success of these events. I believe that families thatparticipate in events together, more often than not end up beingclose to each other.
Timespent to bring together a successful social affair or event is whatmakes all members of the family so close to each other. Otherwise,the completion of daily chores always brings about quarrels. No oneis ever contented with how the chores have been subdivided, andeveryone has an idea of how best this allocation can be done. Theresult of this is that we end up complaining about the same thingsdaily.
Thetable below demonstrates the distribution of chores and how the workhas been done over time.
They axis shows the percentage of hours done by each member of thehousehold. It allows one to compare how much each person contributesin relation to the other members of the household. Before the year59. We did not have a housemaid yet (Giddens, 59). This is the reasonwhy the column for 2004-2008 is blank. The family members were not asbusy then, my mother was working fewer hours and so she could managethe chores that were in the house.
One canalso note that the amount of time contributed by my father greatlyreduced in the years between 2012 and 2014 whereas that of thehousemaid greatly increased. This can be attributed to the fact thathe has been spending more time at work. As such the informationcollected from my family is just as typical as that of otherfamilies with most of the chores being done by the hired help sinceboth parents are working.
This isunlike before where most mothers were expected to be housewives. Atthis day and age, it is the lady’s choice whether to stay at homeand help with the chores or continue with her employment. Womenempowerment allows even mothers to be working and hire another ladyto care of the house as well as all the chores that would have to becompleted in the house. In my opinion, this household complies withwhat is regarded as a normal family, since all members have adistinct role to play (Giddens, 59). Everyone is expected to complyto this regulations so as to ensure that we have some sense of order.
Childrenand other family members also do various household tasks. In somehouseholds, their domestic input are sorely needed they are requiredto participate for financial and practical reasons. Although men areengaging more hours on housework tasks, the responsibility ofnoticing when tasks ought to be done, is often assumed by wives. Inthe 1990s, women tended to shoulder the burden of administering thehousehold as well as putting in more hours and carrying out most ofthe undesirable tasks. In line with this division of duties in themanagement of domestic affairs, most couples still continue tocharacterize husbands` input to childcare or housework as "helping"their wives.
Previousresearch has shown that African males reallocated over 70% of theirhousehold`s work time to other duties. All these was as a result ofmale chauvinism aspect before gender equality awareness came dueincreased western culture civilization which led to achievement indivision of labor. Further analysis depict that this gender-baseddivision of labor is emblematic of continuing gender disparity andgender role socialization in African society. The main concernof scientists from all social domains has been and still is tounderstand why the division of labor is unequally distributed bygender.
Giddens,Anthony, and Anthony Giddens. Introduction to Sociology. New York: W.W. Norton & Co, 59. Print.
Beamish,Rob. The promise of sociology: The Classical Tradition andContemporary Sociological Thinking. Toronto: University of TorontoPress, 156. Print.
Wolf,Michaela, and Alexandra Fukari. Constructing a sociology ofTranslation. Amsterdam: J. Benjamins Pub. Co, 87. Print.