Anke C. Plagnol. "Chasing the 'good life': gender differences in work aspirations of American men and women".

chapter 4 in: Elizabeth Eckermann (ed.). Gender, Lifespan and Quality of Life - An international perspective, 

Social Indicators Research Series 53. Springer (2014). (abstract)(link)


People’s views on what constitutes a ‘good life’ vary by sex, age and life stage. The shortfall between aspirations and attainments over the life course in family life and material goods domains corresponds closely to life course satisfaction with finances and family life. This chapter focuses on empirical evidence on aspirations and attainments of American men and women in the work domain which supports arguments for strong gender and generational differences given dramatic changes in female labor force participation over the last decades. The chapter describes gendered life course patterns of aspirations and attainments for an interesting job, a job that pays much more than average and a job that benefits society. The chapter concludes with an analysis of how aspirations for a job that pays well have changed for men and women across different birth cohorts.