Emory Law News Center

Emory International Law Review article tackles gender roles in the workplace
By Emory University School of Law | Emory Law | December 15, 2017

The first issue of the current Emory International Law Review volume features a timely article by Taylor Stoneman entitled “International Economic Law, Gender Equality, and Paternity Leave: Can the WTO be Utilized to Balance the Division of Care Labor Worldwide?”

Stoneman, a judicial law clerk at the US District Court for the Central District of California, wrote the article to add to the existing commentary regarding how women’s prescribed gender roles prevent them from attaining true equality.  “My initial interest stemmed from a personal curiosity about the gender pay gap and its causes. Deeper research showed that beyond cultural expectations subjugating women to the role of primary caregiver, structural inequalities buried within domestic and international legal schemes and markets further limit women from succeeding in the workplace at the same rate men succeed,” she explained. Her ultimate proposal seeks to question the basic understanding of what a global labor market—one that is composed of both men and women, not just men—requires in order to operate.

This topic is especially relevant now, as the US experiences a public conversation about sexual harassment and reconsiders more broadly male dominance and female suppression in the workplace. Stoneman suggests that much of the power imbalance that fosters sexual abuse and harassment stems from persisting assumptions about gender roles.