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Cover for Crunch Time

Crunch Time

How Married Couples Confront Unemployment

Aliya Hamid Rao


List Price: 29.95*
* Individual store prices may vary.

Other Editions of This Title:
Hardcover (6/9/2020)


In Crunch Time, Aliya Hamid Rao gets up close and personal with college-educated, unemployed men, women, and spouses to explain how comparable men and women have starkly different experiences of unemployment. Traditionally gendered understandings of work—that it’s a requirement for men and optional for women—loom large in this process, even for marriages that had been not organized in gender-traditional ways. These beliefs serve to make men’s unemployment an urgent problem, while women’s unemployment—cocooned within a narrative of staying at home—is almost a non-issue. Crunch Time reveals the minutiae of how gendered norms and behaviors are actively maintained by spouses at a time when they could be dismantled, and how gender is central to the ways couples react to and make sense of unemployment.

Praise For Crunch Time: How Married Couples Confront Unemployment

This is a must read for students and scholars interested in the gendered negotiations and gendered patterns of work for pay and housework. The book is well researched and situated in the relevant literature, but it is also accessible and could be used in any undergraduate course on gender, work, and the family. . . . Essential.

Crunch Time is a necessary addition to the sociological research on unemployment that has been surprisingly lacking in a gendered/work-family lens. . . . engagingly written and accessible to a wide audience.”
— LSE Review of Books

University of California Press, 9780520298613, 308pp.

Publication Date: June 9, 2020

About the Author

Aliya Hamid Rao is Assistant Professor in the Department of Methodology at the London School of Economics.