Women in New Asia
Changing New Social Roles


By M.P. Kumar
September 2011
MD Publications
Distributed by Coronet Books Inc.

ISBN: 9788175333475
309 pages

$35.00 Paper original



Cultural values become manifest in cultural norms and behaviors. Gender roles and the implications of these expectations on Asian women are particularly relevant. Traditional Asian gender roles prescribe for women to place the role of wife and mother above all others; men are expected to be the family breadwinner and spokesperson. Asian cultural values consequently encourage distinct spheres for men (e.g., work) and women (e.g., home) and a gendered household division of labor in which the burden of household duties such as housekeeping tasks and childcare rest heavily on women.

Given the burden of household responsibilities and child care, Asian women face the demands of multiple roles, which often go beyond the general three roles working mothers generally take on (i.e., wife, mother, and worker) to include responsibilities such as: caretaker of aging parents, sister, aunt, cousin, etc. Asian women may also experience their multiple roles differently from women in individualistic cultures, given the super ordinate importance of the family over the individual.

 

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