Summary of The Man Trap

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With a career, housework and child rearing, is it easier for a mother than a father to do it all? One Manhattan lawyer doesn’t think so. In fact, men are more likely than women to slog through long hours to support their families and less likely to take the parental leave they crave. Outdated social norms hurt men, too. Economist contributor Emily Bobrow covers a discussion about masculinity you don’t hear nearly enough. getAbstract still recommends this read to those interested in modern gender roles.

In this summary, you will learn

  • How men suffer from traditional gender norms when they try to maintain work-life balance,
  • How society punishes men when they take advantage of so-called feminine benefits like parental leave, and
  • Why more-balanced partnerships between men and women are better for opposite-sex couples’ health and careers overall
 

About the Author

Emily Bobrow is a regular contributor to The Economist and 1843 Magazine and lives in New York City, New York.

 

Summary

Although he hesitates to say it out loud, Manhattan lawyer Nathan thinks that society helps professional women balance work and home life better than men. While many celebrate stay-at-home mothers, they disapprove of fathers who cut back their hours to care for children. Because white professional men have a lot of privileges, they’re often reticent to talk about pressures they face from traditional gender roles. Women in many ways suffer more. In opposite-sex relationships, they do twice the child care and housework as male partners, and new working mothers enjoy less than a third of the leisure time that fathers do. To boot, US men make more money when they get married and have kids, while women’s earnings drop by roughly 6% with one child and approximately 15% with two children.

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