Gender and Class in Modern Europe 9781501724183

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Gender and Class in Modern Europe
 9781501724183

Table of contents :
Contents
Acknowledgments
Introduction: Gender and the Reconstruction of European Working-Class History
I RETHINKING PROLETARIANIZATION
1. Gender and Uneven Working -Class Formation in the Irish Linen Industry
2. What Price a Weaver's Dignity? Gender Inequality and the Survival of Home-Based Production in Industrial France
3. The Gendering of Skill as His tori cal Process: The Case of French Knitters in Industrial Troyes, I880-1939
II PUBLIC AND PRIVATE IN WORKING-CLASS HISTORY
4. Consumption, Production, and Gender: The Sewing Machine in Nineteenth-Century France
5. Engendering Work and Wages: The French Labor Movement and the Family Wage
6. Women "of a Very Low Type": Crossing Racial Boundaries in Imperial Britain
III GENDER, CLASS, AND THE STATE
7. Protective Labor Legislation in Nineteenth-Century Britain: Gender, Class, and the Liberal State
8. Social Policy, Body Politics: Recasting the Social Question in Germany, 1875-1900
9. Republican Ideology, Gender and Class: France, 1860s-1914
IV GENDER, POLITICS, AND CITIZENSHIP
10. Manhood, Womanhood, and the Politics of Class in Britain, 1790-1845
11. Rational and Respectable Men: Gender, the Working Class, and Citizenship in Britain, 1850-1867
12. Class and Gender at Loggerheads in the Early Soviet State: Who Should Organize the Female Proletariat and How?
13. The Heroic Man and the Ever-Changing Woman: Gender and Politics in European Communism, 1917-1950
Contributors
Index

Citation preview

GENDER AND CLASS IN MODERN EUROPE

GENDER AND CLASS IN MODERN EUROPE EDITED BY

Laura L. Frader and Sonya 0. Rose

CORNELL UNIVERSITY PRESS ITHACA AND LONDON

Copyright© 1996 by Cornell University All rights reserved. Except for brief quotations in a review, this book, or parts thereof, must not be reproduced in any form without permission in writing from the publisher. For information, address Cornell University Press, Sage House, 512 East State Street, Ithaca, New York 14850. First published 1996 by Cornell University Press. Printed in the United States of America

Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data Gender and class in modem Europe/edited by Laura L. Frader and Sonya 0. Rose. p. em. Includes bibliographical references and index. ISBN o-8014-2922-6 (cl.: alk. paper).-ISBN o-8014-8146-5 (pb. : alk. paper) 1. Women-Employment-Europe-History-Case studies. 2. Working class-Europe-History-Case studies. I. Frader, Laura Levine, 1945- . II. Rose, Sonya 0. HD6134.C58 1996 331.4'094-dC20 95-52529 ~The

paper in this book meets the minimum requirements of the American

National Standard for Information Sciences-Permanence of Paper for Printed Library Materials, ANSI Z39.48-1984.

Contents

Acknowledgments

Introduction: Gender and the Reconstruction of European Working-Class History Laura L. Frader and Sonya 0. Rose

I

ix

r

RETHINKING PROLETARIANIZATION

r Gender and Uneven Working-Class Formation in the Irish Linen Industry fane Gray 2

What Price a Weaver's Dignity? Gender Inequality and the Survival of Home-Based Production in Industrial France Tessie P. Liu

3 The Gendering of Skill as Historical Process: The Case of French Knitters in Industrial Troyes, r880-1939 Helen Harden Chenut

37

57

77

vi

II

Contents PUBLIC AND PRIVATE IN WORKING-CLASS HISTORY

4 Consumption, Production, and Gender: The Sewing Machine in Nineteenth-Century France Judith G. Coffin

I I I

5 Engendering Work and Wages: The French Labor Movement and the Family Wage Laura L. Frader

I42

6 Women "of a Very Low Type": Crossing Racial Boundaries in Imperial Britain Laura Tabili

III

GENDER, CLASS, AND THE STATE

7 Protective Labor Legislation in Nineteenth-Century Britain: Gender, Class, and the Liberal State Sonya 0. Rose

I93

8 Social Policy, Body Politics: Recasting the Social Question in Germany, I875-I900 Kathleen Canning

2II

9 Republican Ideology, Gender, and Class: France,

I860S-I9I4

Judith F. Stone

IV IO

I I

GENDER, POLITICS, AND CITIZENSHIP

Manhood, Womanhood, and the Politics of Class in Britain, I790-I845 Anna Clark

263

Rational and Respectable Men: Gender, the Working Class, and Citizenship in Britain, 1850-I867 Keith McClelland

280

I2 Class and Gender at Loggerheads in the Early Soviet

State: Who Should Organize the Female Proletariat and How? Elizabeth A. Wood

294

Contents

vii

13 The Heroic Man and the Ever-Changing Woman: Gender and Politics in European Communism, 1917-1950 Eric D. Weitz

311

Contributors

353

Index

357

Acknowledgments

We are indebted to the contributors to this book for their creative efforts, their hard work, and their patience while the project came to fruition. We thank Ava Baron for her encouragement as we began the volume and M. J. Maynes for her superb critical readings. Peter Agree of Cornell University Press has been supportive of our work and enthusiastic about the project in each of its phases. Northeastern University and the University of Michigan provided partial support. The Center for European Studies at Harvard University provided a congenial and stimulating place to meet and work. We thank Kristina Pfefferle, research assistant in the Department of History, Northeastern University, who helped at one stage of the project, and Patricia Preston, of the Sociology Department's Center for Research on Social Organization at the University of Michigan, who came to our rescue on more than one occasion. L. L. F. and S. 0. R.

Introduction: Gender and the Reconstruction of European Working-Class History Laura L. Frader and Sonya 0. Rose

Developments in feminist scholarship have moved gender as an analytical category from the periphery of scholarship into the spotlight of historical inquiry. At the same time, class, which had held pride of place in the conceptual tool kit of labor history, has been subjected to increasingly critical scrutiny as scholars have explored new theoretical approaches that have challenged earlier frameworks. This book demonstrates how the study of gender both transforms the ways we think about working-class history and reinvigorates the study of topics that have long been of interest to labor and social historians. The chapters examine the significance of gender in the processes of industrial, social, and political transformation in the United Kingdom and Ireland, France, Germany, Russia, and Italy with the emergence of industrial capitalism, the nature of work and of social and class relations underwent major shifts. As states attempted to regulate their economies, working-class and middle-class movements attempted to expand citizenship and political participation through both parliamentary processes and revolution. The contributors to this volume consider how gender meanings and relations shaped and were in turn shaped by these intertwined economic, social, cultural, and political transformations. The focus on gender suggests that paradigms of labor history that are based on the universal category "worker" and privilege productive rela-

2

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tions need to be replaced by new ways of thinking about the subjects and subject matters of history. Thus the chapters also attend to the importance of language and culture in social life, illuminating how political identities are constituted and social categories are created, contested, and changed. At the same time, and without being reductive, they show that gender has been a central dimension of the social practices and power relations that have had profound consequences for people's lives. The "new labor history" has produced a rich and varied portrait of the European working class that has yielded new understandings about collective action; democratic and socialist political movements and ideological developments; working-class culture, sociability, and leisure; household structures and their formation; changes in the content of work and the labor process; and the efforts of individual labor movement leaders. We now know a considerable amount about glassblowers, hatters and tailors, metalworkers, automobile workers, agricultural laborers, textile workers, coal miners, and domestic servants in Britain, France, Germany, and Russia. We have learned how economic conditions, workplace structures, and community institutions were transformed over the course of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, and about the social contexts in which workers organized or participated in movements to change their political and social conditions. Social historians have chronicled the rise of socialist and labor parties in France, Britain, Germany, and Russia. They have portrayed the waxing and waning of collective action and protest and the fates of organized labor movements in all of those countries. They have examined the nature of worker organization in Russia before and after the Revolution. 1 1. Among the major works are Michael Hanagan, The Logic of Solidarity: Artisans and Industrial Workers in Three French Towns, I8?I-I9I4 (Urbana, 198ol; Steven Laurence Kaplan and Cynthia J. Koepp, eds., Work in France: Representations, Meaning, Organization, and Practice (Ithaca, 1986); Joan Scott, The Glassworkers of Carmaux (Cambridge, Mass., 1975); Leonard Berlanstein, The Working People of Paris, I87I-I9I4 (Baltimore, 1984!; Eleanor Accampo, Industrialization, Family Life, and Class Relations in SaintChamond, I8I5-I9I4 (Berkeley, 1989); Molly Nolan, Social Democracy and German Society jNew York, 1981!; David Crew, Town in the Ruhr: A Social History of Bochum jNew York, 1979); Jiirgen Kocka, Lohnarbeit und Klassenbildung: Arbeiter und Arbeiterbewegung in Deutschland, r8oo-r875 !Berlin, 1983); Gerhard A. Ritter, ed., Geschichte der Arbeiter und der Arbeiterbewegung in Deutschland seit dem Ende des I 8 fahrhunderts (Bonn, 1984-90); E. P. Thompson, The Making of the English Working Class jHarmondsworth, 1968!; Eric Hobsbawm, Labouring Men: Studies in the History of Labour ILondon, 1964); Hobsbawm, ed., Workers: Worlds of Labour INew York, 1984); James E. Cronin, Labour and Society in Britain, I9I8-I979ILondon, 1984!; John Foster, Class Struggle and the Industrial Revolution !London, 1974!; Patrick Joyce, Work, Society, and Politics: The Culture of the Factory in Later Victorian England (Brighton, 1980); William G. Rosenberg and Lewis Siegelbaum, Social Dimensions of Soviet Industrialization !Bloomington, 1993!; William Chase, Workers, Society, and the Soviet State: Labor and Life in Moscow, I9I8-r929(Urbana, 1987); Diane P. Koenker and William G. Rosenberg,

Introduction

3

Scholars have disagreed as to the relative importance of economic or cultural factors and the differential significance of institutions, organizations, traditions, and communities in historical analyses of European work and workers. The centrality of the concept of class and the ontological status of the "social/' however, seemed secure during the 1970s and early 198os. Although there were indications even then of serious ruptures in what seemed to be a consensus on the boundaries of the field, scholars optimistically searched for a grand synthesis in labor and working-class history. 2 Increasingly, however, historians are arguing that the field has entered a period of crisis (or if not crisis, then certainly doldrums) that contrasts with the vitality and innovation of the 1970s and 198os.3 To be sure, part of that crisis, if crisis it is, has to do with the weakening of labor movements and left political formations in Europe and the rest of the world that provided models and aspirations for a generation of new labor historians, and the failure of the working class to function (as many hoped) as the vanguard of progressive social change. 4 At the same time, an increasing number of scholars have challenged the analytical paradigms of the field by emphasizing the importance of language and discourse in social life. Their work questions the validity of class as a subject of analysis and the value of political economy as a framework for his tori cal understanding. 5 Strilltl'

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