Rahat Shah, M.A.


Goethe-Universität Frankfurt
GRK Doing Transitions

IKB-Gebäude, 4. OG
Eschersheimer Landstraße 121
60322 Frankfurt am Main

Theodor-W.-Adorno-Platz 1
IKB-Gebäude, Postfach 3
60323 Frankfurt am Main


Doing Transitions to non-normative work-family arrangements

The increase in women’s educational attainment, augmented employment opportunities in the labour market, and shifts in family structures have contributed to a growing number of women assuming breadwinning roles. However, the exploration of transitions towards gender non-normative arrangements in the context of the global south has remained limited. Pakistan, characterized by its highly patriarchal cultural backdrop, prioritized gendered division of responsibilities, and distinct institutional context devoid of welfare state provisions and support systems such as unemployment insurance, offers a unique setting for investigating these transitions. Consequently, my doctoral thesis examines the various dimensions of men’s and women’s transitions towards non-normative family-work and carer-breadwinner arrangements. By concentrating on the experiences, practices, and coping strategies of female breadwinners and their male partners—particularly in response to stigmatization—I aim to illuminate diverse facets of Doing transitions and the manner in which individual experiences are shaped by specific social situations, cultural discourses, and institutional regulations.

Employing a constructivist grounded theory approach, a version of the grounded theory method that acknowledges the co-creation of knowledge by participants and researchers, emphasizing that meanings are derived from active engagement with realities, and entails concurrent data collection and analysis through constant comparison.

Data were collected from couples in which the female partner is the sole or predominant earner for their families. The study will contribute to research on female breadwinning in a highly patriarchal cultural context and to the theorization of „doing transitions.“ Furthermore, it will enhance the debate surrounding the life course perspective by considering the role of institutional context (e.g., labor market structure, work-family policies, and gender culture) in shaping the subjective experiences of female breadwinning couples during their transition to non-normative roles.


Batool, R., Fleschenberg, A., Glattli, L., Haque, A., Holz, S., Khan, M. S., Pal, S., Shah, R., Tareen, M. (2021). Researching South Asia in Pandemic Times: Of Shifting Fields, Research Tools, Risks, Emotions and Research Relationships. Südasien-Chronik – South Asia Chronicle, 11(3), 419-467. http://dx.doi.org/10.18452/24182

Shah, R., Hayat, A., Zaman, M., & Sabir, I. (2021). Youth Experiences of Violence at Home, School, and Street in Disadvantaged Urban Neighborhoods of Islamabad, Pakistan: Troika of Violence. Deviant Behavior, 1-14.

Shah, R., Saeed, S., Aslam, S., & Ali, I. (2020). Unemployment and social stigma: Naming, blaming and shaming of educated youth in rural Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan. International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy.

Shah, R., Sabir, I., & Khan, S. A. (2020). Student’s Risk Perception and Attitude towards Drug Abuse in Educational Institutions of Pakistan. Global sociological Review, V (IV), 19-29.

Shah, R., Saeed, S., & Leghari, I. 2020. U. Environmental Issues, Climate Change and Youth Risk Perception: A Quantitative Survey from Students in Islamabad, Pakistan.

Khan, S. A., Sabir, I., & Shah, R. (2020). On-Campus Drug Consumption: Exploring the Trends and Patterns in Metropolitan Cities of Pakistan. Global Regional Review, 4, 118-127.

Shah, R., SR, Ali., S, Saeed, (2021). Perceptional differences towards jarga system among different age groups: a quantitative approach. Pakistan Journal of Society, Education and Language (PJSEL) 7(2)


Masculinity Studies: A cross cultural perspective. (Wintersemester 2022), B.A. Gender Studies, Soziologie, Erziehungswissenschaften, Goethe-Universität Frankfurt


Kleinen Gender Projekte 2022. Post-colonial feminist research in a highly patriarchal context: A reflection paper on the methodological challenges and complexities.


International Sociological Association
American Sociological Association