Changing Family Models: Emerging New Opportunities for Fathers in Catalonia (Spain)?

  • Lluís Flaquer
  • Almudena Moreno Mínguez
  • Tomás Cano López
Part of the Global Masculinities book series (GLMAS)


In the present chapter, we try to explore the characteristics of families with young children making a special emphasis on the changing role of fathers in relation to childcare depending on their employment status. In particular, the chapter examines the extent to which the prevalence of high male unemployment rates in Catalonia (Spain) in recent years, in connection with other social and economic factors, is contributing to shape new patterns of allocation of time involving a more equitable sharing of childcare and domestic tasks between partners. We are interested in enquiring to what extent mass unemployment may be viewed as an opportunity for enhancing gender equity and social investment in childhood and what can be the long-term consequences of these new developments for work-life balance and for the relationships between fathers and children. Finally, we wonder whether these new arrangements may have a permanent character as new opportunities for fathers or if they will fade away as soon as there is an economic recovery.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Alexander, M., and Baxter, J. (2005). “Impacts of Work on Family Life among Partnered Parents of Young Children.” Family Matters, 72, 18–25.Google Scholar
  2. Baxter, J. (2009). Parental Time with Children: Do Job Characteristics Make a Difference? Barton, ACT: Australian Institute of Family Studies.Google Scholar
  3. Bernhardt, Goldscheider F., and Lappegard, T. (2014). “Studies of Men’s Involvement in the Family.” Journal of Family Issues, 35(7), 879–890.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Bianchi, S. M. (2000). “Maternal Employment and Time with Children: Dramatic Change or Surprising Continuity?” Demography, 37(4), 401–414.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Blair, S., and Lichter, D. (1991). “Measuring the Division of Household Labor: Gender Segregation of Housework among American Couples.” Journal of Family Issues, 12(1), 91–113.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Brand, J. E. (2015). “The Far-Reaching Impact of Job Loss and Unemployment.” Annual Review of Sociology, 41, 1.1–1.17.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Brayfield, A. (1995). “Juggling Jobs and Kids: The Impact of Employment Schedules on Fathers’ Caring for Children.” Journal of Marriage and Family, 57(2), 321–332.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Cabrera, N., Tamis-Lemonda, C., Bradley, R., Hofferth, S., and Lamb, M. (2000). “Fatherhood in the 21st Century.” Child Development, 71(1), 127–136.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Coltrane, S., and Adams, M. (2008). Gender and Families. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield.Google Scholar
  10. Coverman, S. (1985). “Explaining Husbands’ Participation in Domestic Labor.” The Sociological Quarterly, 26(1), 81–97.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Craig, L. (2007). Contemporary Motherhood: The Impact of Children on Adult Time. Aldershot: Ashgate Publishing.Google Scholar
  12. Craig, L., and Mullan, K. (2009). “The Policeman and the Part-Time Sales Assistant: Household Labour Supply, Family Time and Subjective Time Pressure in Australia 1997–2006.” Journal of Comparative Family Studies, 40(4), 545–560.Google Scholar
  13. Craig, L., and Mullan, K. (2011). “How Fathers and Mothers Share Childcare: A Cross National Time-Diary Comparison.” American Sociological Review, 76(6), 834–861.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Daly, M. (2011). “What Adult Worker Model? A Critical Look at Recent Social Policy Reform in Europe from a Gender and Family Perspective.” Social Politics, 18(1), 11–23.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Daly, M., and Scheiwe, K. (2010). “Individualisation and Personal Obligations: Social Policy, Family Policy and Law Reform in Germany and the UK.” International Journal of Law, Policy and the Family, 24(2), 177–197.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Fernandez, C., and Sevilla Sanz, A. (2006). “Social Norms and Household Time Allocation.” Economics Series Working Papers 291, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.Google Scholar
  17. Gauthier, A., Smeeding, T., and Fustenberg, F. (2004). “Are Parents Investing Less Time in Children? Trends in Selected Industrialised Countries.” Population and Development Review, 30(4), 647–671.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Gershuny, J. (2000). Changing Times: Work and Leisure in Postindustrial Society. Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  19. Godbey, G., and Robinson, J. (1997). “The Increasing Prospects for Leisure.” Parks and Recreation, 32(6), 74–82.Google Scholar
  20. Gonzalez, M. J., Miret, P., and Trevino, R. (2010). “Just Living Together: Implications of Cohabitation for Fathers’ Participation in Child Care in Western Europe.” Demographic Research, 23(16), 445–478.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Gough, M., and Killewald, A. (2011). “Unemployment in Families: The Case of Housework.” Journal ofMarriage and Family, 73, 1085–1100.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Gracia, P. (2012). “Paternal Involvement and Children’s Developmental Stages in Spain.” DemoSoc Working Paper, Paper Number 2012–46.Google Scholar
  23. Gracia, P. (2014). “Fathers’ Child Care Involvement and Children’s Age in Spain: A Time Use Study on Differences by Education and Mothers’ Employment.” European Sociological Review, 30(2), 137–150.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Gutierrez-Domenech, M. (2010). “Parental Employment and Time with Children in Spain.” Review of Economics of the Household, 3(8), 393–408.Google Scholar
  25. Hook, J. (2006) “Care in Context: Men’s Unpaid Work in 20 Countries, 1965–2003.” American Sociological Review, 71(4), 639–660.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Hook, J., and Wolfe, C. (2012). “New Fathers? Residential Fathers’ Time with Children in Four Countries.” Journal of Family Issues, 33(4), 415–450.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Kitterod, R., and Pettersen, S. (2006). “Making up for Mothers’ Employed Working Hours? Housework and Childcare among Norwegian Fathers.” Work, Employment and Society, 20, 473–492.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Lewis, J., Campbell, M., and Huerta, C. (2008). “Patterns of Paid and Unpaid Work in Western Europe: Gender, Commodification, Preferences and the Implications for Policy.” Journal of European Social Policy, 18(1), 21–37.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. McClain, L., and DeMaris, A. (2013). “A Better Deal for Cohabiting Fathers? Union Status Differences in Father Involvement.” Fathering, 11, 199–220.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. McKee-Ryan, F., Song, Z., Wanberg, C., and Kinicki, A. (2005). “Psychological and Physical Well-Being during Unemployment: A MetaAnalytic Study.” Journal of Applied Psychology, 90(1), 53–76.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. McLanahan, S. (2004). “Diverging Destinies: How Children Are Faring under the Second Demographic Transition.” Demography, 41(4), 607–627.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Milkie, M., and Peltola, P. (1999). “Playing All the Roles: Gender and the Work-Family Balancing Act.” Journal of Marriage and the Family, 61, 476–490.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. O’Brien, M. (2013). “Fitting Fathers into Work-Family Policies: International Challenges in Turbulent Times.” International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy, 33(9/10), 542–564.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Pleck, J. H., and Masciadrelli, B. P. (2004). “Paternal Involvement by US Residential Fathers: Levels, Sources, and Consequences,” in M. Lamb (ed.), The Role of the Father in Child Development. New York: John Wiley, pp. 222–271.Google Scholar
  35. Raley, S., Bianchi, S. M., and Wang, W. (2012). “When Do Fathers Care? Mothers’ Economic Contribution and Fathers’ Involvement in Child Care.” American Journal of Sociology, 117, 1422–1459.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Rapoport, B., and Le Bourdais, C. (2008). “Parental Time and Working Schedules.” Journal of Population Economics, 21(4), 903–932.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Robinson, J. P., and Godbey, G. (1997). True for Life: The Surprising Ways Americans Use Their Time. University Park: Pennsylvania State University Press.Google Scholar
  38. Roeters, A., Van Der Lippe, A. G., and Kluwer, E. S. (2009). “Parental Work Demands and the Frequency of Child-Related Routine and Interactive Activities.” Journal of Marriage and Family, 71(5), 1193–1204.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Sayer, L., Bianchi, S., and Robinson, J. (2004). “Are Parents Investing Less in Children? Trends in Mothers’ and Fathers’ Time with Children?” American Journal of Sociology, 110(1), 1–43.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Strazdins, L., Clements, M., Korda, R., Broom, D., and D’Souza, R. (2006). “Unsociable Work? Nonstandard Work Schedules, Family Relationships and Children’s Well-Being.” Journal of Marriage and the Family, 68, 394–410.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Sullivan, O. (1996). “Time Co-ordination, the Domestic Division of Labour and Affective Relations: Time Use and the Enjoyment of Activities within Couples.” Sociology, 30(1), 79–100.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Wall, G., and Arnold, S. (2007). “How Involved in Involved Fathering? An Exploration of the Contemporary Culture of Fatherhood.” Gender and Society, 21(4), 508–527.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Woldoff, R., and Cina, M. (2007). “Regular Work, Underground Jobs, and Hustling: An Examination of Paternal Work and Father Involvement.” Fathering, 5(3), 153–173.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Lluís Flaquer, Almudena Moreno Mínguez, and Tomás Cano López 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Lluís Flaquer
  • Almudena Moreno Mínguez
  • Tomás Cano López

There are no affiliations available

Personalised recommendations