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Lecture Note 3 Gendered Work in Time and Place

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1 Lecture Note 3 Gendered Work in Time and Place
SOSC 102U Lecture Note 3 Gendered Work in Time and Place

2 The Sexual Division of Labor in Preindustrial Europe (1)
Agricultural Work: Men’s work: plow, threshed, harvest, build houses, hew timer, harrow, dug ditch, and cut hedges Women’s work: weed, harvest, raise domestic animals (milk, churn butter, make cheese and butcher these animals), make bread, beer, cloth and clothing. Manufacturing Work: Men in manufacturing substantially earned more than women and enjoyed more autonomy. Women’s workshops: most female labor in these workhouses were slaves of nobility or the monasteries or the wives and children of slaves. Others were serfs or prisons. They received their board and room in exchange for their labor. These women’s workshops became extinct before industrialization. Artisans: almost all artisans were men. They earned an income from the products they made and sold.

3 The Sexual Division of Labor in Preindustrial Europe (2)
Cottage industry (or putting-out system): before industrialization, women and children manufactured some goods at home through a system of cottage industry. Source: Cited from Gerhard Lenski, Jean Lenski, Patrick Nolan, Human Societies: An Introduction to Macrosociology (New York : McGraw-Hill, 1991), p. 228.

4 The Industrial Revolution
Major impact on the sexual division of labor: the changing economic role of a household—Family production was replaced by market production in which capitalists paid workers wages to produce goods in factories and mines…. “Labor force”: people work for pay or actively seek paid work 1. Wage workers 2. Unemployed persons 3. Nonemployed: not privileged classes who can be exempt from productive work but a growing group of unpaid workers. They cooked and cleaned for family members, raised children, cared for sick relatives, and provided social and emotional support to family, friends and community. “The distinction between paid work in the labor market and unpaid domestic work by the “nonemployed” has important consequences for gender inequality, because for the past 200 years, men have been more likely than women to belong to the labor force, and women have been more likely than men to be unpaid workers” (Padavic and Reskin, p. 20)

5 Textiles Works in Halstead, England, 1825*
* Based on Carol Adams, Paula Bartley, Judy Lown, Cathy Loxton, Under Control: Life in a Nineteenth-century Silk Factory (Cambridge University Press, 1983) Case study in Samuel Courtauld’s silk mill in 1825, Halstead, Essex (Southeast England) Compare the wages for men’s jobs compared with the pay for the women’s jobs (p. 17)

6 Wages of Male Workers in Courtauld
Number Weekly Wages  MALES 1 1000 pounds per year  Mill Manager (Also got 3 per cent of the profits) 26 15s-32s  Overseers and clerks 6 17s-25s  Mechanics and engine drivers 3 14s-21s  Carpenters and blacksmiths 15s  Lodgekeeper 16 14s-15s  Power loom machinery attendants and steamers 18 10s-15s  Mill machinery attendants and loom cleaners 5 5s-12s  Spindle cleaners, bobbin stampers and packers, messengers, sweepers - 7s-10s  Watchmen 5s-10s  Coachmen, grooms and van driver 38 2s-4s  Winders 114  Total Males

7 Wages of Female Workers in Courtauld
Number Weekly Wages  FEMALES 4 10s-11s  Gauze examiners 9s-10s  Female assistant overseers 16 7s-10s  Warpers 9  Twisters 6s-9s  Wasters 589 5s-8s  Weavers 2 6s-7s  Plugwinders 83 4s-6s  Drawers and doublers 188 2s-4s  Winders 899  Total Females 1013  GRAND TOTAL WORK FORCE

8 The Sexual Division of Labor between Paid and Unpaid Work (1)
The labor force became increasingly male throughout the nineteenth century (the masculinization of labor force) Urbanization and the fall of women’s labor force Statistics in the U. S. 1840: 40% industrial workforce was contributed by women and children 1890: only 17% of women was in the labor force Protective labor laws: institutionalize the masculinization of labor force

9 The Sexual Division of Labor between Paid and Unpaid Work (2)
The interplay between gender and class inequality: Upper and middle-class family: The Ideology of Separate Spheres: Workplace vs. Family Life But labor force participation was a necessity for the poor and working-class women. The ideology of separate spheres hurt working-class wives, whose families need to be supported by double incomes. Many working-class women therefore took up the work such as doing piecework or taking in laundry, sewing, or boarders to earn money at home. The work usually has lower pay and longer working hour than a “real job”. The ideology changed after the 1970s, when the gap between men’s and women’s labor force participation rates narrowed considerably.

10 Question According to Padavic and Reskin, women’s participation in unpaid domestic work (the nonemployed work) has serious consequence to gender inequality, would their status be improved by increasing their contribution to household income?

11 Sexual Division of Labor in Late Imperial China (1)*
* Based on Kathy L. M. Walker, “Economic Growth, Peasant Marginalization, and the Sexual Division of Labor in Early Twentieth Century China: Women’s Work in Nantong County, Modern China, Vol. 19, No. 3 (July, 1993), Nantong, a county in northwestern Shanghai. 15th.—early 19th.centuries: The sexual division of labor in Nantong: men till, women weave. Raw cotton Yarn Cotton Cloth spin weave Men’s work Women’s work Sexual division of labor within a peasant’s household (the Nantong case, 16th. C.-19th. C.)

12 Figures of “the men till, the women weave (男耕女織)” in China
Wearing blue kerchiefs, women are busy with weaving, Cotton balls burst and they start to pick cotton, At market, the cotton cloth they have woven is very popular, Their products are well-respected, so are their customs. --Gu Lan Miao (preliminary translation by Jane Zhang) Francesca Bray, Technology and Gender: Fabrics of Power in Late Imperial China (Berkeley, University of California Press, 1997), p. 220.

13 Sexual Division of Labor in Late Imperial China (2)
Economic significance: Women’s cotton production geared the overall economic growth in China: cloth made in the Yangzi Delta district became the leader of cloth production in the country. These products were sold in northern, southern and inland market. Impact on women’s status: Women’s production for the market became crucial to family maintenance. However, women’s new “profitability” did not improve their position in the family. The income they generated was controlled not by the women themselves, but by the family head (the father, the husband or the father-in-law)

14 Sexual Division of Labor in Late Imperial China (3)
After the Opium War (1840s): the introduction of inexpensive foreign imported machine-spun yarn made peasant households could weave more cloth. But the foreign yarn changed the production process of cotton cloth. 1. For weaving peasant families: adoption of machine yarn deepened their market dependency. Previously the wove the cotton grew locally, now they had to sell raw cotton formerly used for spinning to obtain the cash necessary to buy yarn. Peasants with insufficient land to provide (through the sale of harvested crops) for yarn purchase and for the expense of loom could not afford to weave. If they really wanted to weave, they had to obtain yarn on credit at usurious rates. 2. For merchants: they could control raw materials and marketing. Merchants gained new leverage in determining both terms of trade and the type of cloth produced. These changes marked the beginning of a series of developments through which over the next decade Nantong’s merchant-industrial elite gained growing control over the forms and conditions of peasant production without undertaking its direct supervision.

15 Sexual Division of Labor in Late Imperial China (4)
Raw cotton Yarn (spun in local factories or foreign imports) Cotton Cloth Sell to factories weave Women’s work Men and women’s work These changes resulted from 1) expansion of rural industry; 2) growth of the cotton trade; 3) new modes of obtaining the rural surplus through the operation of usury-merchant capital. Also because the merchants could determine the terms and conditions of trade, they offered cloth producers with less than subsistence wage-equivalents. The peasants therefore had to make ends meet by incomes from both farming and weaving.

16 Sexual Division of Labor in Late Imperial China (5)
Impact on sexual division of labor: new pattern of sexual division of labor between men and women from the early 20th. Century: Women farmed and wove, while men moved into various forms of permanent, seasonal, or part-time wage work. When at home, if possible, the busiest farm seasons, men also engaged in farming and weaving. The change was a new method and strategy to forestall further land division so that cloth production and family subsistence could be maintained.

17 Sexual Division of Labor in Late Imperial China (6)
Was Nantong women’s status improved? “Despite the changes in their labor roles, women remained under the control of male family members and, by extension, the supervision of mothers-in-law who owed their position and primary allegiance to husbands and son. Even when women’s work became the mainstay of family subsistence, it was in major respects invisible since men controlled the marketing of the commodities and the income women generated.” “Related, the worst abuse of the family system—female infanticide, child marriage, contract prostitution, and the buying and selling of women—not only continued but in fact may have been on the rise.”

18 The Women Issues in Developing Countries Today (1)
1. As western countries, those who are expected to do the unpaid domestic work in their homes are predominantly women; 2. From the 1970s, women’s participation in the labor force has been increasing. Most of the growth has been in the informal sector of the economy where income, benefits, and job security are precarious; 3. Women’s work is less valued than men’s work. Women’s work is paid less than men’s. Those doing unpaid domestic work receive lower prestige and power.

19 The Women Issues in Developing Countries (2)
Informal Sector: work under family business or family farms; self-employed work; sub-contracting piece-work (paid by productivity but not by wage—no guaranteed minimum income) Three-quarters of all workers in Africa and Asia and almost one-half of workers in Latin American are working in informal sector. Globalization: mobile capita investment from country to country; MNCs; Deregulation of state policies; migrant workers

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