Changing patterns of female smoking: A comparison of workers and full-time homemakers by class, race, and community type

Academic Article


  • © 2017 by Emerald Publishing Limited. This chapter compares smoking among American women employed outside the home with those of full-time homemakers at two points in time: 1979 and 2014. Data are from the 1979 National Household Survey on Drug Abuse (NHSDA) and from the 2014 National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH). The NHSDA is the precursor to the present-day NSDUH and part of the same continuum of nationwide surveys on drug use. The analysis uses logistic regression models and the survey suite of commands in Stata 13 to include 1979/2014 sample weights and adjustments for the complex sample design. Results show that smoking is most prevalent among homemakers in small communities. This outcome supports earlier studies citing smoking as a major causal factor for the decline in female life expectancy amongless-educated white women in certain low-income and rural counties in the United States. The premise that female smoking is strongly associated with the workplace appears to be no longer true. These data provide only a limited test of health lifestyle theory because many of the model's structural variables are not included. Otherwise the findings support the model. This study finds that smoking is greatest among women who are full-time homemakers in medium and especially small towns. This is a new development and suggests the locus of smoking among women has moved away from its association with the job in cities to the home in less populated areas.
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Cockerham WC; Hamby BW; Bauldry S; Drentea P
  • Start Page

  • 279
  • End Page

  • 297
  • Volume

  • 35