The Gendered Nature of Men's Filial Care
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OBJECTIVES: This paper investigates sociodemographic and family structure factors that predict men's involvement (n = 773) in different gendered dimensions of filial caregiving: traditionally male, gender neutral, and traditionally female care. METHODS: The concepts that guide this research relate to family obligations or motivations to provide care, specifically, commitment to care, legitimate excuses, and caring by default. Data for this research come from the Work and Family Survey (1991-1993) conducted by the Work and Eldercare Research Group of CARNET: The Canadian Aging Research Network. RESULTS: Although such factors as geographic proximity and sibling network composition predict men's involvement independent of the type of task, the gendered nature of the task is important in how other factors, such as filial obligation, parental status, education, and income influence involvement in care. DISCUSSION: The findings suggest that, for traditionally male tasks, legitimate excuses or a commitment to care may play a more minor role in influencing men's involvement than is true for traditionally female tasks. Overall, this research demonstrates the importance of examining the gendered nature of the care tasks and highlights the value of the conceptual framework for explaining variations in men's filial care.
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