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Lecture 8

GGR313 Lecture 8 (May 30, 2013).docx

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University of Toronto Mississauga
Jeffrey May

GGR313 Lecture 8 - Work, gender, cities - Assignment return dates o Proposals returned June 4 o Mini essay grades returned June 6 - Work is related to: o Public/private space o Construction of identities in public space o Ideas of ‘home’ o Constructions of masculinity/femininity o Race - Part 1: Gender and work o Work and separate spheres o What is work and what counts as work? - Work: ‘the application of mental or physical effort to carrying out tasks that serve human needs’(Feminist Glossary of Human Geography) o Is this a political definition? o It’s not a definition work with vocation, it includes all types of general work that people do to get on with their lives - Traditional division of home and work o Work done by women has historically been devalued o In part, this is because of the ideological division of separate spheres  Work done inside versus outside the home o Separate spheres is the idea that men and women have different areas of work such that women usually do work inside home and work done by men are outside of home o Women’s work was devalued because work done by women are usually in homes which is a place of relaxation - The ideological difference between productive and reproductive work o Productive work is gendered male  Making a car, creating a lecture, o Reproductive work is gendered female  Not just about making baby  Includes all work that goes on without actively creating things  Reproducing situations in which productive work can exist  Making meals, washing dishes, caring for babies  Reproductive work supports productive work o But...productive and reproductive work crosses public and private spheres - Gendered jobs, gendered work spaces o If the idea of ‘separate spheres’ does not hold anymore.... o Jobs are gendered either male or female  Male: doctor, lawyers, construction workers  Female: service jobs, nurses, o (from the McDowell recommended readings) But gendered differences are more about who does the job than about the job itself  It has to do more with who does the job than the actual characteristics of the job o Jobs are usually associated with a particular gender - McDowell’s quote o „It is not the characteristics of jobs themselves that demand attributes or skills that are associated with supposedly masculine or feminine traits, but rather it seems that who does a job depends on how it is socially constructed, valued and concomitantly rewarded. Feminist economists, sociologists and geographers, however, have had a long struggle in establishing this relationship and in the process have had to provide counterarguments to traditional explanations for this widespread pattern of gender segregation‟ (McDowell, 1999: 127). - Typing in the early 20 century, typing was a feminine job but because of the technological advancement, it got regendered and becomes a masculine job o Cashiers are usually women o Women as the “fair sex” in which they’re more soothing than man - Spaces associated with public/private and home/work are gendered as well o Workplaces themselves are gendered in addition to people’s identities in the workplace  In the ‘coldly rational and intellectual area of the corporate bankers, in offices and boardrooms, or in the carnivalesque atmosphere of the trading floors, the female body is ‘othered’ (McDowell, 1999:145) - ...for a moment, back to productive and reproductive work o This idea of separation of productive work and reproductive work has been criticized rd also by postcolonial and 3 wave feminists for being ethnocentric (meaning considering one’s own ethnic group as normal) o Argument was that women in the third world has long been doing work inside the home and outside the home and that it straddles both sides  Ex. Making clothes and textiles inside their home instead of outside o Home should be considered a workplace, still a feminist political aim - In reality o Private, home and public, work are overlapping - ‘Get a room!’: separate spheres o We still think that private, home is separated from public, work - What happens when home and work get completely muddled up? - Part Two: Racialization and Work o Ideas from Grace-Edward Galabuzi o There are also ideological and practical separations along racial lines between different jobs o Changes to globalization, immigration patterns, job market structure, labour needs
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