Interpreting the Intersections of Work and Family: Frame Conflicts in Women’s Work

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The reluctance of many workers to take advantage of flexible work schedules and other discretionary benefits is evidence of the continuing influence of "separate spheres" ideology and other traditional value premises in contemporary organizations. This article uses the concepts of "frame" and "framing" to examine the interpretive context of work and family practices in the lives of female engineers, a group whose occupational culture informally maintains a strong bifurcation of public and private domains. Drawing on qualitative interviews with twelve women who are engineers and mothers, this article examines the ways they negotiate various interrelated cultural and institutional expectations in their efforts to create a socially approved, professional identity.

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The Electronic Journal of Communication, v. 10, no. 3-4