The Economics of the Second Sex, 1974, page 8

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education and income of husband, age at first child, and so on. The method seems
inadequate because each of these variablesxrefers to a_woman's role as wife and
mother, which, if what you're trying to explore is her role as employee, may

not be totally explanatory. Nobody predicts the labor force participation of

men in terms of their roles as husbands and fathers. I suspect that such I
analysts, because they insist on using whatever data are available, fail to

ask the right questions. Not that I know what the right questions are - far from
it.

But I have begun asking new questions. I have started to look at things
which economists have taken for granted - like the unemployment rate —from'the
point of View of women. For example, I have been revieweing the distribution of
‘income with special reference to women and have concluded that women's position
as family members has almost entirely obscured the economic stance of women in
the economy, or as contributors of labor services. I have specialized for many
years in the fields of household consumption.patterns, with special reference
to marketing, and of income and saving. I am one of the few economists who .
think businessmen respectable; in fact I believe that economists interested
in consumer choice might well benefit from business interests in marketing
research and vice versa. It follows that I have long been aware of the impact
of working women on income and consumption patterns. For example, at one point
I tried to interest insurance companies and some large retail chains to give
some thought about how to market their products to working wives. Nothing came
of.this probably because I didn't sdJ_hard enough; I suppose I'm not a
profit maximiser for myself. But now I can use this knowledge frequently in“
my newfound situation as an expert.

The other impact on my own research has been to make me more cautious.
I am conscious of a responsibility not only to my own profession but to women
in general to be extremely careful about what I say. For'one thing, I can no
longer afford the gesture of exaggeration to make a point. I have not yet learned
this totally —,jL's very hard for me to take mynelf this seriously - but I am»

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