Arlie Russell Hochschild was born on January 15, 1940 in Boston, Massachusetts with a fairly prestigious family history with her father – Francis Henry – being a diplomat. Her mother’s name was Ruth Russell. Her own family started in June of 1965 with her marriage to Adam Hochschild, who at the time was a magazine editor. She had two children, whom she named David and Gabriel Russell. She attended Swarthmore College in Pennsylvania and received her Bachelor’s Degree, she then went on to graduate from University of California: Berkeley with her M.A. and Ph.D.
She received her B.A. from Swarthmore College in 1962, her M.A. in 1965 and Ph. D. in 1969; she received both of these degrees from the University of California, Berkeley.
Arlie Hochschild grew up in a very gendered home, her father was the breadwinner and her mother was the caretaker. But Hochschild’s mother did more than just be a homemaker, she volunteered for the PTA, helped start a preschool program in Montgomery County, and support Francis Henry’s career as a diplomat. Hochschild drew on her experiences as a child and the family dynamic to enable her to do research and write about care giving and having the caring relationship with your children. She explains to us in the introduction of her book, The Commercialization of Intimate Life, that her mother was very good one and she devoted her life to caring for the family and was great at it, but never really seemed happy to be doing so.
Hochschild is a member of the American Sociological Association, the Sociologists for Women in Society, the American Gerontological Society, the American Federation of Teachers, Sociological Research Association, and lastly, the International Association for Research on Emotion.
She is currently both a writer and a teacher. She has taught at the University of California, Santa Cruz as the assistant professor of Sociology from 1969 to 1971 and at the University of California, Berkeley where she is currently the professor of sociology from 1983 to now, but before that she was the assistant professor from 1971 to 1975 and then associate professor from 1975 to 1983.
The three writers that Hochschild refers to as opening her eyes to sociology were Erving Goffman, David Riesman, and C. Wright Mills.
She is also a strong activist for a mother’s right to be able to balance equally her job that earns an income and her job of being a caring mother, as well as a homemaker. Along with her strong stance on the above issues, Dr. Hochschild has been the director of the Center for Working Families since 1998.
Works / Theories
The Second Shift refers to the “double work” that women often take on in addition to their day jobs (which can be largely professional). The second shift includes housework, childcare, domestic responsibilities and more. Hochschild says that even though women are now working and often have the same jobs as men, their domestic role at home hasn’t change much, this is what she refers to as the stalled gender revolution.