Women and the Economy

Women and the Economy - Soc/SW 202 Women's Studies Women...

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Soc/SW 202 Women's Studies Women, The Economy and Work Three Economic Periods 1. Family based economy (17th to early 18th) a. Household was the basic unit of the of the economy because production occurred primarily in the home. b. Women supervised the housework c. Product were made at or grown at home. Work of children and women was interdependent of the man's work. Resources, labor, and consumption was balanced. d. Single white women would often work in other's homes. f. Black women and men at this time were slaves. Slave economy differed from others in that the slaves did all or most of the work and the owners reaped all the profit. 2. The family-wage economy (mid 18th to 20th) a. Center of labor moved from household into factory system. It was a result of industrialization. b. Household became dependent on wages the workers brought home. c. Brought about the dual roles for women as outside wage earner and unpaid housewife. d. Value and worth of house work was diminished. e. Males controlled the wage-labor system and women and children became a part of it as a cheap supply of labor. f. Women became more financially dependent on men. g. Black women worked primarily as domestics. 60% held these positions. h. Black men worked in agriculture or service professions. the seasonal nature of this work led to low wages and prevented them from becoming the breadwinner in the family-the mark of achievement in the white society. i. Women from other minorities held jobs similar to blacks, domestic, agricultural, textile and garment workers. There was also an influx of white immigrant women who were put to work in the textile factories of the northeast U.S. . j. Women moved into work as teacher, clerical workers and nurses as those fields developed. 3. Family Consumer economy (now) a. Extension of the family wage economy, only now modernization was supposed to have freed up more time to do labor. b. Women's productivity higher than it ever was in the past c. Women do the same amount of housework. d. Even though they work outside the home, women are seen primarily as consumers. e. Rosie the riveter became a national call to action as millions of women left their homes to take over the work that men were doing before they left for war. They were able to find higher paying, more responsible and prestigious jobs at this time. f. After the war women were laid off in great numbers. Women who had help positions of power or high pay were shunted into low paying clerical or service jobs. g. White women were now working with women of color on an almost equal % basis. Some difficult definitions Work - "that which people do for pay". but many women and men do work for no pay such as housework, volunteer work.
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Housework- involves physical tasks and mental energy for organization. Emotional labor- work people do to manage the emotions of others.
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Women and the Economy - Soc/SW 202 Women's Studies Women...

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