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Thanks for telling us about the problem. Return to Book Page. Preview — Living Alone by Lynn Jamieson. Roona Simpson. In Northern Europe almost half of households consist of one person. Prevalent first among the elderly, living alone then becomes common at ages associated with partners and children. Fears about the end of family and community combine with stereotypes, the 'sad and lonely' or 'selfi In Northern Europe almost half of households consist of one person. Fears about the end of family and community combine with stereotypes, the 'sad and lonely' or 'selfish singles', in popular depictions.

This book presents a systematic sociological analysis of the growing trend of solo living across the globe, while also drawing on the voices of working-age men and women living in urban and rural areas in the UK. Get A Copy.

Living Alone - Globalization, Identity and Belonging | Lynn Jamieson | Palgrave Macmillan

Hardcover , pages. Published September 16th by Palgrave Macmillan first published January 1st More Details Other Editions 4. Friend Reviews. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. To ask other readers questions about Living Alone , please sign up. Lists with This Book.

Globalization, Identity and Belonging

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Community Reviews. Showing Rating details. All Languages. More filters. Mandel argues that the impact of work-family policies is conditioned by class. In her study Ireland performed very poorly on parameters of gender inequality in relation to disadvantaged women, highlighting class divisions of gender equality in Ireland. Mandel compared a wide range of country-level indicators of gender inequality in relation to the economic position of women in different class positions and found that Ireland had the lowest score in terms of indicators of female participation rates, amongst the countries studied.

Yet, Ireland and the U. Mandel argues variation in family policies among countries or welfare regimes explain variation in gendered outcomes for not only the labor market participation of women but also their performance in the labor market. As such, as Mandel suggests in a subsequent study:. This chapter shows that, while there have been significant gender changes in Irish society, a developing class polarization between women is emerging.

In order to explore the class divisions of gender inequality in Ireland in relation to family policy, the rest of this chapter will consider women in paid employment and their differing experiences in the labor market. Family policies in Ireland can be argued to reproduce gender and class inequalities by facilitating the employment of some women and limiting those of others. Traditionally accesses to income and resources of any kind have been gendered, as have the very concepts that underpin the examination of social policy: inequality, dependence, need, and citizenship Lewis, As family policy in Ireland traditionally fell into the corporatist model, the legacy of such policies remains today.

The dominant concern of family policy until the s was. Demographic shifts fail to support this vision of women. In only 7. Yet, in spite of the expansion of female employment in Ireland related to economic growth and subsequent employment opportunities, there has been limited work-family policy development in recent years. Irish family policy has failed to keep pace. In fact, increases in female employment occurred despite the lack of state support Millar et al.

State support for working mothers and their families is limited with unpaid parental leave and an absence of public childcare. Barry and Conroy note in relation to Ireland that there has been.

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Although there has been a significant increase in female employment in Ireland over the past two decades, in , In , the employment rate for prime aged women aged was However, While the proportion of women in employment grew rapidly from and , Irish women did not rise to senior managerial positions at the same rate as their male counterparts. In , However, at the other end of the labor market there was an increase of women employed in low-skilled occupations from This raises the question as to why highly skilled women are drawn to public rather than private sector employment.

However, although women are over-represented in the public sector, they are under-represented in senior positions. While fully two-thirds of all civil servants are women, of these While under-representation of women at the higher levels of the civil service remains an issue, there have been very substantial changes. The family profile of the women in the senior positions should be of note. Their survey reported unequal distribution of gender across the management grades. The authors of the report conclude that. It would appear from this analysis that women may be prepared to make sacrifices in their personal life in order to reach senior management grades.

It seems that these sacrifices are not made nearly as frequently by their male colleagues. Valiulis et al. It is noteworthy that only 0. However, Ireland compares favourably in relation to the EU average; the gender pay gap in Ireland was Indeed, earnings within Irish families have shifted analysis of the census highlighting that the woman in the couple increasingly tends to be better educated and have a higher occupational status than the man.

As the authors suggest, this raises interesting policy implications in relation to not only decisions about fertility but also work-family policy. Lone parents are a disadvantaged group in comparison to married parents; they have lower levels of education, are more likely to be situated in the lower manual social class, and have higher unemployment rates.

Forty years ago the typical poor family in Ireland was comprised of two parents with a large number of children; today it is typically a small one-parent family. Explanation for such high levels of poverty amongst one-parent families is increasingly centred on their low level of paid employment, and recent policy documents and proposals suggest that an activation process is the solution to tackle such levels of poverty.

Since , there has been a shift in policy towards those parenting alone at the kernel of which is the belief that a labor market activation program for this group will decrease levels of child poverty and provide greater returns to the exchequer. For years the assumption that underpinned welfare payments to those parenting alone was that recipients were not connected to the labor market McCashin, , and, as a result, were provided little incentive to do so.

In , the Unmarried Mothers means tested allowance was introduced for a child until they reached the age of 18 [3]. While this policy is a move to force lone parents into work, it actually disadvantages those who are already working and in receipt of the payment. In relation to the labor market attachment, the census reported that lone mothers were more likely than their married counterparts to be in paid employment.

Watson and colleagues suggest that.

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What we may be seeing for this group of mothers is the impact of reduced choice. In the absence of a partner to share the earning burden, mothers are less free to choose to devote their time to caring for their family. Lone mothers who would prefer to remain outside the labour force to care for children are likely to find they are unable to afford this option p.

Millar et al. However, it is also clear from research that this desire is a tempered or conditional one. Chief among these is the concern the participants expressed about caring for their children. The parents involved in the research very much viewed themselves, first and foremost, as primary carers for their children. Yet, other barriers exist. These include needs for information and knowledge of the mechanics of the welfare system, high quality and flexible employment, affordable and accessible childcare, and opportunities to build confidence and self-esteem.

The activation policy appears to be shortsighted and could ultimately be ineffective. The utilization of compulsion as a mechanism to induce mothers into paid employment is not, however, exclusive to lone parent families. The introduction of tax individualisation in Budget provoked huge controversy. Essentially, in a move away from the system which allowed for a double tax allowance available to all married couples regardless of employment status, two separate tax bands for married couples were created i.

As a consequence of this, early childhood education and care ECEC provision was limited; government intervention tended to be reactive rather than proactive and for the most part was targeted at children considered at risk or socially disadvantaged Walsh, As such, the majority of ECEC provision developed in an ad hoc manner and was generally small scale, part-time, and largely dependent on community based services and the informal childcare market with a small commercial presence. This absence of policy and support has culminated in what Bradley and Hayes describe as a fragmented and unregulated childcare market of variable quality in which ability to pay largely determined right of access and quality of experience within settings.

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The primary policy focus of the state in this area has been predominately concerned with creating childcare spaces, with a lack of attention paid to supporting the quality of early years provision and pedagogy or to issues of access and affordability, according to Hayes As a consequence of the current economic crisis the government favours the provision of more targeted support. Even though cost and accessibility to childcare services have been addressed in a circumscribed manner and for a somewhat limited number of people due to the restrictions of policies implemented, high costs, inaccessibility, and lack of provision are a constant source of struggle for many families in the state O'Hagan, Total childcare costs as a percentage of the average industrial wage were highest in Switzerland, Ireland, the U.

OCED, High child care costs and their impact have been repeatedly acknowledged as an issue of concern Hayes et al.

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In addition many find themselves in situations of part-time employment, and this is particularly the case for specific groups such as low-skilled women or low-income families, for mothers of younger children, and for lone parents Richardson, In fact, half of all Irish working women aged between 25 and 54 with two or more children below the age of 16 work part-time, and Ireland has the highest rate of female part-time workers in the OECD OECD, The link between unemployment and childcare cost is particularly prevalent for lone mothers; the unemployment rate for lone mothers according to recent CSO figures is Even though unpaid relatives particularly grandparents are the most important source of non-parental childcare for both pre-school and primary school children among Irish families, very little attention has been given to this paradigm for caring at a national policy level.

In Ireland, women who have paid sufficient social insurance contributions are entitled to 26 weeks of paid maternity leave which is taxable and a subsequent 16 weeks of unpaid leave. Russell, Watson, and Banks , in their national survey of pregnant women and work, reported that two-fifths of women took up unpaid maternity leave. Lone parents, non-Irish nationals and mothers with lower levels of education were all significantly less likely to take additional unpaid leave. There is no legal right to work part time in Ireland; indeed part-time work and flexible working arrangement such as flexi hours, job sharing, and working from home are at the discretion of the employer in Ireland and vary greatly.

It provides a legal entitlement to 14 weeks per child, is unpaid, and is available to both parents of children aged up to eight years or 16 years in the case of a child with a disability. The leave can be taken in one continuous period or two separate blocks. However, if the employer agrees, the leave can be used for a period of days or hours. In , this was increased to 18 weeks. As with maternity leave, there were differences in take up with the authors reporting evidence of a link between leave and affordability. Women with unemployed partners were four times less likely to seek parental leave, whereas those with higher earnings were more likely to have requested parental leave. In addition, there were higher take up rates amongst those employed in the public sector.

Family life in Ireland has changed dramatically in the last twenty years and at the core of these changes has been the significant increase of women in paid employment. However, policy has failed to keep pace with this change. The impact of increased numbers of women and men entering third level education due to a policy of expansion since the s is now impacting on labor market trends as more women are entering high-skilled occupations. Concurrently, there has been a growth in the number of women in low-skilled occupations. Yet, policy has yet to acknowledge or facilitate this change.

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  5. It is evident from the discussion above that the remedies for lower- and higher-skilled women in Ireland are not the same, given their differing employment trajectories. The take up of unpaid parental leave is low in Ireland and is strongly linked to affordability and public sector employment. The cost of childcare is prohibitive for those in low-paid jobs; for some, it is made possible through the utilisation of informal arrangements. If labor market activation policies are intended to increase social inclusion via paid employment to facilitate a removal from poverty, and, if such policies are shaped by the notion of helping individuals to help themselves through re integration into the labor market Millar et al.

    Issues of choice, childcare, gaps in service provisions, and lack of suitable employment all need to be addressed, as do the existing tensions and contradictions between different policy areas. The system of support as it exists not only has served to create new barriers but also highlights how Irish family policy is paradoxically reproducing gender and class inequalities by facilitating the employment and education of some women and limiting those of others.

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    The population sample is divided into quintiles fifths from poorest to richest based on their pay. The bottom quintile contains the fifth of the population with the lowest earnings or employment income while the top quintile contains the fifth of the population with the highest earnings. This compares to the poverty rate of 1. Skip to main content Skip to quick search Skip to global navigation. Home About Search Browse. Readdick, Volume Editor. Table of Contents.

    The dominant concern of family policy until the s was Watson and colleagues suggest that What we may be seeing for this group of mothers is the impact of reduced choice. Tax Individualization The utilization of compulsion as a mechanism to induce mothers into paid employment is not, however, exclusive to lone parent families. Conclusion Family life in Ireland has changed dramatically in the last twenty years and at the core of these changes has been the significant increase of women in paid employment.

    References Barnardos National Office CSO figures show ravaging effects of recession on children and families. Retrieved from barnardos. Where are we now?

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    New feminist perspectives on women in contemporary Ireland.