…the data from a study of faculty at the University of California are telling. Female faculty with children report working fifty-one hours a week at their jobs and another fifty-one hours a week doing housework and childcare—truly the second shift. That’s a 102-hour work-week, accounting for more than fourteen hours a day. Add to this eight hours per day for sleeping, an hour for eating and basic hygiene, and by my calculations that leaves these women the grand total of twenty-six minutes a day for themselves. Faculty fathers, by contrast, put in only thirty-two unpaid work hours a week. This substantially lighter load not only enables them to put in an extra five hours a week at work, but to also enjoy a spare /two hours a day/ to spend doing—well, who knows—while faculty mothers continue to launder, cook, test spelling, wash grubby faces, and read bedtime stories. Behind every great academic man there is a woman, but behind every great academic woman is an unpeeled potato and a child who needs some attention. And women who climb the academic ladder don’t just forfeit their leisure. They are much less likely to be married with children than male faculty (41 versus 69 percent, respectively) and, poignantly, twice as likely once in their postreproductive years to say that they would have liked more children. Put simply, the same career entails greater sacrifices for her than for him. So when a female academic who would like to have more than a few minutes for herself every day, as well as a family, jumps off the academic ladder and into a more flexible but dead-end second-tier research position, is it because she’s intrinsically less interested in a demanding academic career or because there are only twenty-four hours in a day?
Cordelia Fine, Delusions of Gender: How Our Minds, Society, and Neurosexism Create Difference (via bkwrmballerina)