The Myth of Unadaptable Gender Roles: Attitudes towards Women’s Paid Work among Immigrants across 30 European countries

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It is a predominant assumption in contemporary political and academic debates that gender roles and attitudes supporting women’s paid work among immigrants are deep-rooted and stable over time. However, the actual work–family orientations among immigrants are rarely studied. The purpose of this article is to study to what extent and at what pace immigrants in general adapt to the attitudes towards women’s paid work that prevail in the host countries. A cross-national research strategy is applied using the European Social Survey rounds 2 (2004), 4 (2008) and 5 (2010), allowing us to compare and analyse attitudes towards women’s paid work among 13,535 foreign-born individuals resident in 30 European countries. The results indicate that immigrants’ attitudes towards women’s paid work are highly structured by the institutional and cultural context of the host country. Both male and female immigrants, as well as immigrants with and without children, adapt to host country attitudes at a high pace.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of European Social Policy
Issue number5
Pages (from-to)387– 401
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2016


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