Majority of Turkish women not looking for employment, research reveals
ISTANBULA study focusing on gender roles and the status of women in Turkish society has revealed that a majority of Turkish women have never held a job and are not looking for employment, while also exposing public perceptions on women’s employment, representation and sexuality.
The Gender and Women’s Studies Center at Kadir Has University in Istanbul shared the findings of its 2016 study on “Public Perceptions on Gender Roles and the Status of Women in Turkey,” which revealed the limited presence of women in the Turkish workforce and commonly held perceptions that produce the end result.
According to the study, around 65 percent of women are currently not working while some 70 percent said they have never held a job. Moreover, slightly over 72 percent of women who participated in the study said they had no wish to be employed in the future.
The participants were also questioned on the reasons for their decision and asked whether they would consider working under different circumstances. In response, almost 48 percent of the women said they could work if their father or spouse permitted it. In addition, 35 percent of the female participants confirmed that a woman should not work unless her husband allows it.
Meanwhile, a majority of participants supported women’s representation in parliament and nearly half possessed accurate information on the number of female deputies at Turkey’s Grand National Assembly.
Some 62.8 percent of participants said they considered the number of women deputies in Turkey, 81, inadequate. Nonetheless, almost 28 percent expressed agreement with the phrase “politics is a man’s game.”
Despite the fact that perceptions related to gender inequality seem widely adopted by the participants, 41.5 percent have nevertheless pointed the finger at gender inequality as one of women’s top problems in Turkey.
Violence against women was considered women’s “gravest” problem by almost 80 percent of the participants, followed by gender inequality, lack of education (34.8 percent) and unemployment (30.6 percent).
The study also revealed strong resistance to controversial subjects including cohabitation, baring children without a legal marriage and LGBT rights.
Only one-fourth of all participants approved of cohabitation before marriage while almost 59 percent said a couple must be married in order to have children. In a similar vein, only 17 percent endorsed same-sex relationships and just one-third of participants said equal rights needed to be granted to LGBT individuals.