Class Notes (808,385)
Canada (493,173)
Sociology (2,049)
Lecture 14

Lecture 14 Beyond the 1950s Family, Meg Luxton’s Chapter 11 Fox “Wives and Husbands”.docx

4 Pages
Unlock Document

McMaster University
Sandra Colavecchia

1 Sociology 2U06: Family Sociology Oct. 31 2011 Lecture 14: Beyond the 1950s Family, Meg Luxton’s Chapter 11 Fox “Wives and Husbands” In the 1950s - Historically unusual period where economic prosperity and the emotional reaction to WWII gave way to many people running towards family life as a way of recovery from that trauma o Reflected in things like the lower age of marriage and the rise in number of children After the 1950’s - Series of economic crises and recessions - Crash of the manufacturing sector o Disappearance of these really good unionized jobs which paid the family wage  Family wage: the paycheck that the man would earn that was enough to support his entire family  Even men with little education were able to get these really decent jobs that paid the family wage  Unskilled labour  Including immigrants - Women needed jobs to make up for this shortfall of really great jobs o Expansion of service sector facilitated jobs for women  Not great jobs  Many lower paying or part time  Not much opportunity for advancement or promotions  Aka “Pink-Collared Ghetto”  Provided many wives with secondary wages to keep the family afloat or help them experience relative prosperity (affording vacations or television service) o Women in paid employment continues today - Couples responding to situation which necessitates consensual solutions o Society didn’t (still doesn’t) assume child caregiving as a public responsibility  Insufficient childcare  Large number of kids in unregulated or unlicensed care Luxton’s Chapter “Wives and Husbands” - Studied full time homemakers in working class families in a mining town in Manitoba o Published in book “More than a Labour of Love” o Marxist feminist perspective  Examines how women’s unpaid labour supports capitalism o Interviewed 60 women that had raised families btw 20s-70s  Talked about some of the changes families experienced in that span of time  1920’s women 2  Domestic labour was very intensive due to low amenities o Paid employment was not an option for the women in this study  Jobs that did exist did not pay enough to care for the family - Class Discussion: What words would you use to describe your ideal imagined/future/current marriage? o Financially stable o Emotionally rewarding o Valuing importance of certain necessities o Equal o Supportive o Harmonious o Mutual respect, fulfillment, satisfaction o Choice (in selection of partner, in whether or not to leave the marriage) o Safety (emotionally & physically) - Class Discussion: What words would you use to describe the marriages discussed by Luxton in this study? o Supportive, but not in the emotional sense o Servitude (women were like servants) o Patriarchal o Obedient o Structured gender roles o Unequal (choices are really constrained, particularly for women) o Unsafe (emotionally and physically)  Conclusion: See profound gender inequalities  Men as sole economic providers, therefore enjoyed a lot of power in the relationship - Women pointed out positive aspects of marriage o i.e. emotional closeness o But constraints as well  Wives dependence on male breadwinner undermined what could have been happy/fulfilling marriage  Economic structure is imposed on marriage which leads to systemic male privilege  No opportunity to be financially dependent  Even though had choice (unless they got pregnant) on whether or not to get married, didn’t really have any alternatives - Class Question: “Tell us about if you have ever had a really frustrating, terrrrrible day at work and then come home to family/roommates (you do not live alone).” o Vent/rage at family  Fits with Marxists theory: When workers are exploited, this is problematic and has repercussions for family life 3  Worker Alienation by Marxist theory o Alienated from products of labour, from fellow coworkers o Nature of wage-work is such that it’s natural for workers to le
More Less

Related notes for SOCIOL 2U06

Log In


Don't have an account?

Join OneClass

Access over 10 million pages of study
documents for 1.3 million courses.

Sign up

Join to view


By registering, I agree to the Terms and Privacy Policies
Already have an account?
Just a few more details

So we can recommend you notes for your school.

Reset Password

Please enter below the email address you registered with and we will send you a link to reset your password.

Add your courses

Get notes from the top students in your class.