Occupational stress: Considering the complex interplay of sex, gender, and job roles

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Findings regarding the relationship between biological sex and job stress remain inconsistent. In the present chapter, we suggest that this is due to the overly simplistic and synonymous treatment of biological sex and gender. Specifically, researchers have operationalized gender as sex, neglecting the inherent complexity of the gender construct. To address this, we take a more nuanced approach and develop a theory around the effects of biological sex and gender on job stress, considering how sex, gender, sex-based prescribed gender roles and work roles interact to create role conflict. We predict that a lack of congruence between any of the aforementioned variables results in various types of role conflict, leading to stress, and requiring coping. Drawing on the literature on role conflict, emotional labor, and facades of conformity, we introduce the concept of gender façades as a coping mechanism. Theoretical and practical implications are discussed.

Publication Title, e.g., Journal

Research in Occupational Stress and Well Being