Fathers with Mothers and Infants at the Mall: Gender Differences in Parenting Behavior
Early Child Development and Care
Taylor and Francis
Previous research on parent‐infant interaction suggests gender differentiation in parental roles: Mothers behaving as caregivers and fathers as playmates. To test whether these roles are expressed by parents’ interest in purchasing either toys or clothing, 109 young infants (55 girls 54 boys) were unobtrusively observed at a shopping mall with their parents. As predicted, infants in toy stores, especially boys, were significantly more likely to be with fathers than those in clothing stores. These results were consistent when various price‐level stores were compared. This study expands our knowledge of parental roles and moves beyond frequency and duration measures of parent‐infant interaction toward a broader perspective by considering parents’ values as they are expressed economically, outside the home.
Roggman, L. A. (1992). Fathers with mothers and infants at the mall: Gender differences in parenting behavior. Early Child Development and Care, 79, 65-72.