<論説>女性と労働(その2) : アメリカ合衆国の労働市場における性差別について [in Japanese] <ARTICLE>Women and Labor (Part 2) : Sex Discrimination in the American Labor Market [in Japanese]
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As a part of a continuing study of women and labor in the United States, this study analyzes, from an economic viewpoint, causes and effects of sex discrimination in the American labor market. The first section consists of a statistical survey of sex differentials in earnings, wages, returns to education, unemployment rates, and occupational distribution. In spite of the large and much publicized gains made by women in recent years, the survey reveals that not only vast economic differentials still exist between men and women but also the overall position of women relative to men has been worsening throughout the post W. W. II period. Wide-spread practices of occupational segregation by sex and crowding of women in ~ relatively small number of low-paying jobs are shown to be the main causes of the low earnings, low wages, and the high unemployment rate of women. In the second section, a review of some of the major quantitative studies of sex discrimination is presented. All of such studies have attempted to measure sex discrimination in terms of earning or wage differentials. In such attempts, occupation, on-the-job training, number of hours worked, and other factors which represent differences in productivity between men and women are held constant using various statistical techniques. However, based on the findings in the first section which suggest sex discrimination most often takes the form of limitations in access to good jobs, on-the-job training, and other occupational privileges, it is argued that quantitative studies which hold such factors constant not only underestimate the effects of sex discrimination but also that they do not grasp the problem of sex discrimination appropriately. In the third section, causes and effects of sex discrimination are theoretically discussed from the demand side. It is shown that sex discrimination is caused by multiple factors such as discriminatory tastes and preferences, statistical discrimination, discrimination by monopsonies, and discrimination by crowding women into a limited number of occupations. It is shown that such factors contribute independently and jointly in bringing about the occupational segregation and sex-stereotyping of jobs as well as earning differentials between equally productive men and women. It is argued that the massive increase in the labor force participation rate of married women in the postwar period is largely responsible for the worsening of the relative economic position of women. The argument is that married women's labor supply tends to be inelastic due to self-imposed limitations in job mobility and geographical mobility so that they are crowded into a limited number of "female" jobs in the local markets and become susceptible to monopsonistic exploitation. In the last section, causes and effects of sex discrimination are analyzed from the supply side. It is pointed out that the shortness and intermittence of women's work-life due to the childbearing responsibility adversely affect their investment in human capital both quantitative-ly and qualitatively and force them to crowd into low-skilled occupations. It is argued that such supply side factors help produce sex discrimination of the demand side and create a vicious circle of sex discrimination.
- Doshisha American studies
Doshisha American studies 17, 31-43, 1981-03-20