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The Evolution of the Intrahousehold Division of Labor in a Market Development Context– A Longitudinal Study of Rural China

He, Yong (2018): The Evolution of the Intrahousehold Division of Labor in a Market Development Context– A Longitudinal Study of Rural China.

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Abstract

With a panel sample of more than 3000 rural Chinese households surveyed over 21 years, this study estimates the evolution of relative roles of social status and human capital in the intrahousehold division of labor under the context of a rapid market development. With the guidance of a theoretical framework, it is found that: 1) market development enhanced the status of women, and changed the traditional rule of “women indoors and men outdoors”; 2) market development allocated more young labor to outward wage-earning jobs and left a higher share of the elderly and juvenile in land-based semi-market activities and chores, indicating an increasing importance of human capital over family status; 3) market enlargement relaxed the entrance requirements for labor market in terms of education level, age and height.

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