Term Paper: Economic Organizations

Pages: 6 (2264 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 1+  ·  Level: College Senior  ·  Topic: Sports - Women  ·  Buy This Paper

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[. . .] She is torn by this dilemma, but agrees to meet for drinks, knowing that her boss and client will be less forgiving than her son. This scene successfully portrays the role that women are expected to play in many organizations, which is that of committed employee, even if this role creates conflict with other roles such as mother.

Jack, in another scene, makes reference to not having much money due to alimony, child support and other bills. The sense is that Jack is a good man for keeping these commitments, but that he could possibly rethink these commitments if his financial situation became too difficult.

The one stereotype that is shared by both Melanie and Jack is that work will always take priority over family in a crunch. For both characters, each must address a critical work situation in one day while finding alternate arrangements for their respective children. At no point do either indicate that an option exists, and both comment that they will be fired if they don't keep their respective work commitments. The underlying message is that work in America is more important than children, and this unfortunate workplace reality is shared by both men and women.

The academic literature and mainstream media support the roles of gender and stereotypes as portrayed in "One Fine Day." Bartol (1980) defined the quality of working life by adopting eight major categories developed in her evaluation of the impact of sex-role stereotyping in organizations. In all eight categories, women are more seriously impacted by these factors than are men, thereby positively reinforcing sex-role stereotypes and negatively affecting women's contributions to the workplace. For example, two of the factors are adequate and fair compensation, and total life space. The former is described as "fairness relative to what is paid to others in similar...types of positions." The gender wage gap, as previously noted, remains in most organizations, which negatively impacts women in the workplace. The latter factor includes "the degree to which the work situation allows the individual to balance the various roles in life, including those involving family and leisure." In the case of Melanie in "One Fine Day," work dominates her total life space and causes her to hide her family obligations from her employer and clients. This situation is not shared by Jack as a man.

Treas and Widmer (2000) note that, "Women around the globe face similar problems reconciling paid work and domestic responsibilities. Compared with other women, mothers of children, particularly young children, are less likely to be employed. When they do work for pay, they are less likely to work full-time." In the case of Melanie, and many other single mothers around the globe, the problem of balancing child-rearing responsibilities with career by working part-time during those years is severely impacted. Kane and Sanchez (1994) state, "...given that economic dependence ties women's economic interests to men's, that women suffer greater harm from marital disruption." Panayotova and Brayfield also note that, "the presence of residual family obligations (in the case of divorced, widowed or separated respondents) should be distinguished from actual experiences of family responsibilities for currently married respondents." In "One Fine Day," the role of gender and stereotypes in economic organizations is exacerbated by Melanie's (and Jack's) status as divorced parents, although Melanie's situation is further compounded by having primary responsibility for her child, while Jack has only secondary care for his child. Despite this confounding situation presented by the marital status of Melanie and Jack, the movie "One Fine Day" presents an accurate portrayal of work and family conflicts that occur in contemporary American society.

Bibliography

Bartol, Kathryn. Female managers and quality of working life: the impact of sex-role stereotypes. Journal of Occupational Behaviour Vol. 1, 1980: 205-221.

Bernstein, Aaron. Women's Pay: Why the Gap Remains a Chasm; A new study spells out the costly impact of family obligations. BusinessWeek Iss. 3887, New York, 14 June 2004: 58.

Blau, Francine and Lawrence Kahn. Gender Differences in Pay. Journal of Economic Perspectives, Vol. 14 No. 4, Fall 2000: 75-99.

Conlin, Michelle. Self-Deprecating Women. BusinessWeek Iss. 3887, New York, 14 June 2004: 26.

Kane, Emily and Laura Sanchez. Family Status and Criticism of Gender Inequality at Home and at Work. Social Forces 72:4, June 1994: 1079-1096.

Lublin, Joann. Women Aspire to Be Chief as Much as Men Do. The Wall Street Journal (Eastern Edition), New York: 23 June 2004: D2.

Panayotova, Evelina and April Brayfield. National Context And Gender Ideology: Attitudes toward Women's Employment in Hungary and the United States. Gender… [END OF PREVIEW]

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