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Dual-Earner Families

Asia And The Middle East, Latin America, Eastern Europe And Russia, Western And Southern Europe

The language of dual-earner families developed in research on families in industrialized societies. The term was needed to describe what was then a new family form that arose when women who had once worked inside the home, doing everything from nurturing work to family farming to producing goods such as candles and clothes, moved into a cash economy and took paid jobs. Questions that emerged from women's paid employment ranged from the effect of women's income on their power within marriage to who would take care of the children at home. These questions only make sense, however, in societies in which most couples live in nuclear families, a cash economy predominates, and both spouses leave the family setting in order to earn money to provide for their household.

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Marriage and Family EncyclopediaModern Marriage & Family Issues