Gender and Labor History The nineteenth century legacy

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146 Sonya O Rose, as the study of working class formation both share this heritage 5 In short. the public private dichotomy with its deeply gendered associations forms. a kind of deep structure of labor history formation. Most histories of labor and class formation have been centered on pro. ductive relations traditionally defined 6 The subjects of working class. history have mainly been male artisans and skilled workers 7 The historical. narratives concern how these workers have created formal organizations. and working class movements to press their interests how various changes. in the nature of their work especially proletarianization and deskilling. have contributed to their politicization and why these workers have not. consistently focused their political energies on changing the production. relations in which they were subordinated participants 8 Moreover the. fount of resistance has been depicted to be at the point of production 9. This is the case as well with the so called new institutionalism advocated in British. labor history by Jonathan Zeitlin See Rank and Filism in British Labour History A. Critique International Review of Social History 34 1989 pp 42 61 and the separate. critiques by Richard Price and James E Cronin International Review of Social History 34. 1989 pp 62 58 For the United States see David Brody The Old Labour History and. the New In Search of an American Working Class Labor History 20 1979 pp 111 126. Howard Kimeldorf Bringing Unions Back In Or Why We Need a New Old Labor. History and comments by Michael Kazin Alice Kessler Harris David Montgomery. Bruce Nelson Daniel Nelson and reply by Howard Kimmcldorf Labor History 32 1991. Man Jo Buhle Gender and Labor History in Perspectives on American Labor History. The Problems of Synthesis edited by J Carroll Moody and Alice Kessler Harris DeKalb. IL Northern Illinois University Press 1989 p 67, Leon Fink Looking Backward Reflections on Workers Culture and Certain Conceptual. Dilemmas within Labor History in J Carroll Moody and Alice Kessler Harris Perspectives. on American Labor History pp 13 14 20 Michelle Perrot On the Formation of the. French Working Class in Working Class Formation Nineteenth Century Patterns in Western. Europe and the United States edited by Ira Katznelson and Aristidc R Zolberg Princeton. University Press 1986 pp 71 110 csp pp 71 83 William H Sewcll Jr Artisans. Factory Workers and the Formation of the French Working Class 1789 1948 in Working. Class Formation pp 45 70 Fricdrich Lcngcr Beyond Exccptionalism Notes on the. Arttsanal Phase of the Labour Movement in France England Germany and the United. States International Review of Social History 36 1991 pp 1 23 For a critique sec Jacques. Rancicrc The Myth of the Artisan and responses by William H Sewcll Jr and Chris. topher J Johnson International Labor and Working Class History 24 Fall 1983 pp 1 47. and responses by Edgar Leon Newman and Nicholas Papayanis and the reply by Jacques. Rancierc International Labor and Working Class History 25 Spring 1984 pp 37 46 For. a study that debunks the idea of an ideal prcindustrial artisanal culture see Michael. Soncnschcr Work and Wages Natural Law Politics and the Eighteenth Century French. Trades Cambridge University Press 1989, For an overview that emphasizes the common themes in European and American labor. history sec Leon Fink Looking Backward, For an excellent overview sec Richard Price The Future of British Labour History As. several commentators have noted the presence of a Marxist teleology is lurking within much. working class history whether revisionist or not Sec Richard Price The Future of British. Labour History p 254 Ira Karznclson Working Class Formation Constructing Cases. and Comparisons in Working Class Formation pp 3 46 esp pp 3 15 Neville Kirk In. Downloaded from https www cambridge org core IP address 149 202 202 5 on 22 Nov 2020 at 14 03 53 subject to the Cambridge. Core terms of use available at https www cambridge org core terms https doi org 10 1017 S0020859000112349. Gender and Labor History 147, Central to these narratives are assumptions about what kinds of conten.
tion are important to class dynamics Class conscious action has often been. conceptualized as rationally directed to altering the relations of produc. tion Only resistance that appears to be directed toward the goals of. workers as a collectivity counts as political and actions undertaken in the. service of family needs or for immediate gains are secondary to the. story of history 10, Feminist labor historians have attempted to write women into these. narratives and to show that the social and cultural construction of gender. difference has been a core feature of industrial capitalism Yet the domin. ant paradigms in labor history continue to be reproduced as though neither. women nor gender were particularly relevant As a consequence numer. ous feminist scholars have maintained that incorporating women workers. and integrating gender into historical studies of labor and class mandate. a complete revision in the conceptual frameworks of the field 11. To make gender a core analytical concept in labor history we need to. begin by rethinking and then revising the foundational assumptions of the. discipline In this essay I hope to make a contribution to this project by. exploring the origins of deeply rooted assumptions about gender and the. nature of public and private life in the dominant traditions of labor history. In what follows I will argue that while the distinction between public. and private with its associated gender means has been a significant feature. of Western thought since the Greeks how it was understood and elabor. ated both in Enlightenment thought and in Marxian social theory. influenced the development of the social sciences generally and labor. Defence of Class A Critique of Recent Revisionist Writing upon the Nineteenth Century. English Working Class International Review of Social History 32 1987 p 39 For a biting. critique linked to the question of exceptionalisms see Dipcsh Chakrabarty Rethinking. Working Class History Bengal 1890 1914 Princeton University Press 1989 pp 219 230. Joan W Scott reveals how some of these themes are central to E P Thompson s The. Making of the English Working Class in Gender and the Politics of History New York. Columbia University Press 1988 Chapter 4 For a critique of Scott s reading of Thompson. see Marc W Steinberg The Re making of the English Working Class Theory and Society. 20 1991 pp 173 197, See Sally Alexander Women Class and Sexual Difference History Workshop 17. 1984 pp 125 149 Sally Alexander Anna Davin and Eve Hostcttlcr Labouring Women. A Reply to Eric Hobsbawm History Workshop 8 Autumn 1979 pp 174 181 Ava Baron. Gender and Labor History Learning from the Past Looking to the Future in Work. Engendered Toward a New History of American Labor edited by Ava Baron Ithaca. Cornell University Press 1991 pp 1 46 Kathleen Canning Gender and the Politics of. Class Formation Rethinking German Labor History American Historical Renew 97 3. June 1992 pp 736 768 Anna Davin Feminism and Labour History in People s History. and Socialist Tlieory edited by Raphael Samuel London Routledgc and Kcgan Paul 1981. pp 176 181 Alice Kcsslcr Harris A New Agenda for American Labor History A Gen. dered Analysis and the Question of Class in Perspectives on American Labor History pp. 217 234 Joan W Scott broke new ground in her call to arms to make gender a central. category of historical analysis in her important book Gender and the Politics of History New. York Columbia University Press 1988, Downloaded from https www cambridge org core IP address 149 202 202 5 on 22 Nov 2020 at 14 03 53 subject to the Cambridge. Core terms of use available at https www cambridge org core terms https doi org 10 1017 S0020859000112349. 148 Sonya O Rose, history in particular 12 Then I will suggest that both the nineteenth century. ideological construction of the private sphere as a feminine domain devoid. of political significance and the constitution of the emerging bourgeois. and working class public spheres as masculine realms of consequential. action shaped the boundaries drawn around the subject matter of the. field 13 Finally I will consider the historiographic consequences of these. boundary definitions and will suggest how historians might begin to redraw. them in order to incorporate women workers and gender into labor s. Despite major differences in approaches to questions of economy and. politics in the main paradigms of liberalism and Marxism both treat the. public private as gendered oppositions In Enlightenment thought accord. ing to Carole Pateman, The family is based on natural ties of sentiment and blood and on the sexually.
ascribed status of wife and husband mother and father Participation in the public. sphere is governed by universal impersonal and conventional criteria of achieve. ment interests right equality and property liberal criteria applicable only to. The subject of Enlightenment political and moral philosophy was not the. adult human person but the male head of household 15. See Susan Moller Okin Women in Western Political Tliought Princeton University Press. 1979 Nancy Fraser examines the way unrecognized assumptions about gender arc embedded. in the ideas of Jurgen Habermas See Unruly Practices Power Discourse and Gender in. Contemporary Social Theory Minneapolis University of Minnesota Press 1989 Chapter. 6 Fraser specifically critiques his concept of the public sphere and its necessary separation. from the private sphere in Rethinking the Public Sphere A Contribution to the Critique of. Actually Existing Democracy in Habermas and the Public Sphere edited by Craig Calhoun. Cambridge MA The MIT Press 1992 pp 109 142, Sec Geoff Eley s important discussion of gender and the construction of the public sphere. in nineteenth century Europe to which some of my ideas about the public sphere arc. indebted Nations Publics and Political Cultures Placing Habermas in the Nineteenth. Century in Habermas and the Public Sphere edited by Craig Calhoun Cambridge MIT. Press 1992 pp 289 339 esp pp 309 319 The public private distinction has been a signi. ficant organizing framework for women s historians although critiques of the idea of separate. spheres have also characterized feminist scholarship For an excellent overview see Linda. Kerber Separate Spheres Female Worlds Woman s Place The Rhetoric of Women s. History Journal of American History 75 1988 pp 9 39 Also see Susan M Revcrby and. Dorothy O Helly Introduction Converging on History in Gendered Domains. Rethinking Public and Private in Women s History Essays from the Seventh Berkshire Confer. ence on the History of Women Ithaca Cornell University Press 1992 pp 1 26 and the. essays in that volume, Carole Pateman Feminist Critiques of the Public Private Dichotomy in Tlie Disorder. of Women Stanford University Press 1989 p 121 Patcman s work demonstrates that the. liberal concept of the individual while presented as a universal construct is in fact particu. lar masculine See The Fraternal Social Contract in The Disorder of Women pp 3 3. 57 and her Social Contract Stanford University Press 1988. Catherine Hall Private Persons versus Public Somcones Class Gender and Politics in. England 1780 1850 in White Male and Middle Class Explorations in Feminism and His. tory Cambridge Polity Press 1992 p 155, Downloaded from https www cambridge org core IP address 149 202 202 5 on 22 Nov 2020 at 14 03 53 subject to the Cambridge. Core terms of use available at https www cambridge org core terms https doi org 10 1017 S0020859000112349. Gender and Labor History 149, Ironically although Marx and Engels were critical of both liberal polit. ical theory and the denigration of the private or domestic sphere under. capitalism they also assumed the existence of dichotomous spheres and. linked the domestic sphere with women and the public sphere with men. Engels argued that under capitalism in the single monogamous family. household management lost its public character It became. a private service 16 As Alison Jaggar has argued Engels never really. defines the difference in social relationships that constitutes public and. private work He does not explain for instance why a man should not. be described as engaged in private service for his feudal lord or even. for an individual capitalist 17 Although Engels recognizes that the sexual. division of labor in the household was a product of social arrangements. he still described the situation in which women went to work in factories. and men stayed at home as depriving the husband of his manhood and. the wife of all womanly qualities 18 Engels used such images of unnat. ural gender roles as a powerful condemnation of capitalism 19. Marx built his concept of class on a view of the economic as restricted. to the production of food and objects 20 What this does of course is. to situate the social relations of reproduction outside of class As Linda. Nicholson has written When productive activities come to. constitute the world of change and dynamism then activities of reproduc. tion become viewed as either the brute physiological and nonhistorical. aspects of human existence or as by products of changes in the eco. nomy 21 For many scholars influenced by Marx the relations which define. specific forms of the family the private sphere are determined by the. Gender and Labor History The nineteenth century legacy SONYA O ROSE All disciplines and sub disciplines are defined through a series of inclusions and exclusions 1 They are based on specific assumptions and conventions that delineate their appropriate objects and methods of study 2 Historians like scholars in other fields including the so called natural sciences do not simply record some

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