Demographic change and behavioral shifts in employment and household arrangements have caused scholars and social critics to question the nature of individuals’ involvement with work and family. Interpreting the cultural meaning of those behavioral changes requires the study of individual commitment per se. This chapter reviews research on commitment to work and family by examining issues of definition, measurement, and specification of the concept of commitment, by assessing theoretical developments in the study of linkages between work and family, and by reviewing research that examines the relationship of work and family to gender, the life course, social origin, and race. The interrelationship between work and family commitment is examined, and issues to be resolved in future research are discussed.


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  • Article Type: Review Article
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