Nationale Tentoonstelling van Vrouwenarbeid (1898 : Hague, Netherlands)
Women -- Employment -- Netherlands -- History -- 19th century.
Women -- Netherlands -- Social conditions -- 19th century.
Feminism -- Netherlands -- History -- 19th century.
Women's rights -- Netherlands -- History -- 19th century.
Inspired by their American and Danish counterparts, some five hundred
Dutch women organized a national exhibition devoted to "Women's Labor"
in 1898. The event took place near The Hague, lasted three months, and
attracted over 90,000 visitors. The conscious and political focus on
women's labor intended to show the ways in which women contributed to the
Dutch nation and advocated decent employment for women as a prerequisite
for citizenship. Many forms of women's labor were depicted, such as
factory girls working behind machines and women from the East Indies
demonstrating arts and crafts. At the exhibition conferences, teachers,
social workers, and nurses spoke about their professions. This article
tells the story of how the women's movement in a small, Western nation
with a large colonial empire used an exhibition to put women's social
position on the political agenda. In doing so, Dutch women transformed
the public sphere.
Tea plantation workers -- China -- History -- Qing dynasty, 1644-1912.
Women -- China -- Economic conditions -- 1644-1912.
Women -- China -- Social conditions -- 1644-1912.
This article explores the tension between women's labor and tea-picking
through the Confucian norm of "womanly work." Using local gazetteer and
poetry as major sources, it examines the economic roles and the lives
of women tea-pickers over the course of China's imperial history. It
argues that women's work in imperial China took on different meanings as
ecological settings, economic resources, and social class shifted. The
very commodity—tea—that these women produced also shaped
portrayals of their labor, turning them into romantic objects and targets
of gossip. But women tea-pickers also appeared as good women with moral
dignity, suggesting the fundamental importance of industry and diligence
as female virtues in imperial China.
Current debates about globalization often treat it as a
late-twentieth-century phenomenon. But many of the characteristics of
the contemporary global economy are continuations of older trends:
accelerating substitution of globally marketed products for local
products, the rapid growth of the labor force producing goods and services
for the international market, and the complex mediation of local and
regional economic conditions within global power relations. One of the
most significant aspects of globalization from a feminist point of view
is its disruption of local gender divisions of labor and its impact
on women's wage labor. The history of Europe's spinning industry as
it moved from cottage to factory between 1750 and 1900 puts a new spin
(so to speak) on accounts of globalization and gender. Europe's early
industrial capitalist development brought regions of Europe into and out
of production for globalizing markets through selective investment and
disinvestments. Then, as now, women's work, and in particular the work of
young women, played a key role in the region's "economic development."
Women domestics -- Mexico -- Mexico City -- Social conditions -- 20th century.
Public welfare -- Mexico -- History -- 20th century.
Historians of Mexican labor have long considered domestic service
analytically elusive owing to its informal nature and the fact
that it took place in private homes. Located at key junctures of
legal and social reform during Mexico's early revolutionary period,
domestic service comes into focus through examination of public welfare
institutions where domestics appeared in multiple roles. Family law
reform legalizing adoption provided protection against adoption of state
wards as domestic servants. Federal maternal-child health programs,
the outcome of discursive valuation of maternity and domesticity,
raised the qualifications for certain kinds of domestic labor in
institutional settings. Federal labor law included domestic service,
establishing legal recourse against abuse but also codifying the low
social status of domestic service. These early developments illuminate
ways that revolutionary reforms intended to modernize Mexican family
forms to support national economic goals simultaneously constructed a
gendered informal labor sector.
Sexual harassment of women -- Social aspects -- United States -- History -- 20th century.
Sex discrimination against women -- United States -- History -- 20th century.
Clothing workers -- United States -- Social conditions -- 20th century.
Sexual harassment is often described only as a "common experience" to
women's labors. An examination of the turn-of-the-century garment industry
demonstrates how harassment did more than render work uncomfortable
for women—it was central to how men constructed and protected
definitions of skill and the naturalness of sexual segregation at
work. Initial resistance to harassment by immigrant Jewish and Italian
female workers was difficult. By the 1910s, however, working women in
collaboration with elite reformers turned to strategies of unionization
and languages of ladyhood. Yet their efforts tended to focus on the
experience of harassment, rather than on its relationship to hierarchies
of skill and pay. In addition, unionization focused attention on the
harassment by bosses alone. Sexual harassment should be understood as
a historically specific, unequal form of interaction and as a tool for
the policing and naturalization of sexual difference at work.
Women in the labor movement -- Ontario -- Dunnville -- History -- 20th century.
Women's rights -- Ontario -- Dunnville -- History -- 20th century.
Dunnville (Ont.) -- Ethnic relations -- Political aspects -- History -- 20th century.
A 1964 strike by women workers in Dunnville, Ontario provides an
exceptional perspective on the complex ways in which class, gender,
and ethnicity unite in the construction of identity. The women strikers
drew on left-wing traditions of feisty femininity to claim an identity as
real workers and authentic unionists while also embracing multi-ethnic
identities that distinguished them from the Anglo-Celtic middle
class. Their claims to authenticity challenged pervasive assumptions,
including those of their union brothers, who defined labor militancy as
implicitly male and distorted memories of the strike. Yet the limits on
the women's own constructions of these identities are evident in their
inability to perceive the Native women who scabbed during the strike
as workers. By contrasting the ways in which identity was claimed,
assigned, and contested by different groups of workers, this story
problematizes categories of identity that are often used uncritically
in labor history.