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Women Bringing Home the Bacon

Detail from the promotional poster for the 1983 movie "Mr. Mom," starring Michael Keaton and Teri Garr.

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There’s a power shift underway in earning power in the American family, in the American marriage. More and more wives are out-earning their husbands.

Women already get more college degrees. Now, a new study says, in marriages where the couple is under forty, nearly a quarter of women make more than their spouse. More than the guy. A generation ago, that portion was closer to zero.

That’s a big change. We wonder how it changes the family chemistry. The gender roles. Our culture.

This hour, On Point: What does it mean when the wife makes the bigger bucks?

Guests:

Joining us from New York is Kathleen Gerson, professor of sociology at New York University. She focuses on gender, work, and family life. Her latest book is “The Unfinished Revolution: How a New Generation is Reshaping Family, Work, and Gender in America.”

And from Berkeley, Calif., we’re joined by Joshua Coleman, a clinical psychologist and expert on families, parenting, and relationships. He’s co-chair of the Council on Contemporary Families. His latest book is “When Parents Hurt: Compassionate Strategies When You and Your Grown Child Don’t Get Along.”

More links:

Read the Pew Research Center study “New Economics of Marriage: The Rise of Wives,” published this week.

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