Verbruggen Nails the Work/Family Balance Between Fathers and Mothers

June 17, 2019 by Robert Franklin, Member, National Board of Directors, National Parents Organization

I’m continuing today with Robert Verbruggen’s accurate and refreshing analysis of data on men’s and women’s work time, both paid and unpaid (IFS, 6/11/19).  Here’s a quotation regarding men’s and women’s preferences that I included in Saturday’s post:

As David Barash put it in his book Out of Eden, “there is no society in which men do more fathering than women do mothering.” And as Steve Stewart-Williams noted in The Ape That Understood the Universe, it is far more common not just among humans but in nature writ large for females to be the sex that invests more in children. The reasons for this are obvious and many. The mother is always present at a child’s birth, for instance, making maternal bonding an especially reliable way to ensure a kid is taken care of; moms also can be sure that the children they deliver are their own, and thus don’t risk “wasting” (in evolutionary terms) their parental investments on a child who doesn’t share their genes. At a minimum, we shouldn’t find it surprising or offensive if women indicate a greater desire to spend time with their children, even if it costs them at work. And they do.

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