Munich Personal RePEc Archive

Spousal gaps in age and identity, and their impact on the allocation of housework

Yamamura, Eiji and Tsutsui, Yoshiro (2019): Spousal gaps in age and identity, and their impact on the allocation of housework.

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Abstract

This study investigates how spousal age gaps influence the allocation of housework between husbands and wives. Further, we consider the identity formed as a result of respondents’ family backgrounds by specifically exploring the effects of the age gaps between the respondents’ parents. We initially collect an individual-level panel dataset covering the periods before and after marriage, by monthly surveys of unmarried persons in the initial period prior to marriage, then the three-year period that follows. After controlling for individual- and time period-fixed effects, the key findings are as follows: (1) after marriage, women older than their husbands tend to become burdened with a larger amount of housework, and the spousal gap effect increases as the marriage duration increases; (2) women with mothers older than their fathers tend to assume a larger allocation of the housework as the marriage duration increases; and (3) the age gap hardly affects the men’s allocation of housework, although men with a full-time working mother at age 15 assume a larger allocation of housework as the marriage duration increases.

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