An asymmetrical portrait: Exploring gendered income inequality in the arts

Danielle J. Lindemann, Carly A. Rush, Steven Tepper

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


While a large body of work has focused on gendered income inequalities in other fields, virtually no literature has explored this phenomenon within artistic careers. We use the Strategic National Arts Alumni Project (SNAAP)—a nationwide survey of 33,801 individuals who have received degrees in the arts—to assess the gendered earnings gap for artists and for nonartists. We find that the gendered earnings gap is comparable for artists and nonartists, and that artistic careers are subject to some of the same social forces that drive disparity in other occupational realms. Yet in the arts, we do not find the wage penalty to motherhood that has been documented in virtually every other field. Broader implications for scholarship on gender and work, as well as suggestions for further research and policy, are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)332-348
Number of pages17
JournalSocial Currents
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 2016


  • Artists
  • Gender
  • Income
  • Wage gap

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences(all)


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