Men work more hours than women in both full-time and part-time jobs, while women still shoulder most of the housework, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).
The BLS study, using data from 201,5 shows employed men, on average, work 42 minutes more per day than women. While that figure is partially attributed to women working more part-time jobs than men, among full-time employees, men worked 8.2 hours per day compared to women’s 7.8 hours.
One of the biggest reasons why the much-cited gender pay gap, often described by economists as a gross simplification, amounts to an average of 79 cents on the dollar, is because men undertake more paid work than women. The principle reasons a wage gap appears between men and women is because of life choices such as having children and balancing work with other priorities.
A much higher percentage of women engage in housework and unpaid work than men, according to BLS. Half of women in the BLS study said they did some housework compared 22 percent of men. More than two-thirds of women said they prepped or cleaned up food on an average day, while 43 percent of men said the same.
Many feminist campaigners claim the difference between men and women’s work habits reflects a patriarchal and sexist society rather than men and women’s preferences.
“The typical feminist take on this division of labor is that women are somehow forced to do housework and care for children, either by societal expectations or by the fact that husbands refuse to their ‘fair share’,” writes Charlotte Allen of the Independent Women’s Forum.
“But maybe it–like the fact that men put in longer hours on their jobs outside the home–has more to do with the sexes’ personal inclinations and choices. Such as the fact that women generally like to have cleaner houses and laundry than men, and that yard work comports better with men’s generally superior physical strength.”