The Political Economy of Gender: Explaining Cross-National Variation in Household Bargaining, Divorce, and the Gender Voting Gap

37 Pages Posted: 1 Jul 2008

See all articles by Torben Iversen

Torben Iversen

Harvard University

Frances McCall Rosenbluth

Yale University - Department of Political Science

Date Written: August 2003

Abstract

Mainstream political economy has tended to treat the family as a unit when examining the distributional consequences of labor market institutions and of public policy. In a world with high divorce rates, we argue that this simplification is more likely to obscure than to instruct. We find that labor market opportunities for women affect women's bargaining power within the family and as a result, can explain much of the cross country variation in the household division of labor, patterns of divorce, and political preferences.

This paper was prepared for presentation at the Annual Meetings of the American Political Science Association, August 28-31, 2003, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The authors are grateful to Joseph Altonji, Robert Pollak, and Justin Wolfers for helpful comments and information, and to Nirmala Ravishankar and Alastair Hamilton for able research assistance.

Suggested Citation

Iversen, Torben and Rosenbluth, Frances McCall, The Political Economy of Gender: Explaining Cross-National Variation in Household Bargaining, Divorce, and the Gender Voting Gap (August 2003). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1154135 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1154135

Torben Iversen

Harvard University ( email )

Institute for Quantitative Social Science
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Frances McCall Rosenbluth (Contact Author)

Yale University - Department of Political Science ( email )

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