This analysis uses nationally representative time diary data from 1965, 1975 and 1998 to examine trends and gender differences in time use. Women continue to do more household labor than men; however, men have substantially increased time in core household activities such as cooking, cleaning and daily child care. Nonetheless, a 30-minute-per-day free-time gap has emerged. Women and men appear to be selectively investing unpaid work time in the tasks that construct family life while spending less time in routine tasks, suggesting that the symbolic meaning of unpaid work may be shifting. At the same time, access to free time has emerged as an arena of time inequality.

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