Women and Work in Britain since 1840: 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Women and Work in Britain since 1840

1st Edition

By Gerry Holloway


306 pages

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pub: 2005-07-29
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The first book of its kind to study this period, Gerry Holloway's essential student resource works chronologically from the early 1840s to the end of the twentieth century and examines over 150 years of women’s employment history.

With suggestions for research topics, an annotated bibliography to aid further research, and a chronology of important events which places the subject in a broader historical context, Gerry Holloway considers how factors such as class, age, marital status, race and locality, along with wider economic and political issues, have affected women’s job opportunities and status.

Key themes and issues that run through the book include:

  • continuity and change
  • the sexual division of labour
  • women as a cheap labour force
  • women’s perceived primary role of motherhood
  • women and trade unions
  • equality and difference
  • education and training.

Students of women’s studies, gender studies and history will find this a fascinating and invaluable addition to their reading material.

Table of Contents

1. Introduction 2. ‘Fit Work for Women’ Working Class Women and Paid Work in the Mid Nineteenth Century 3. The Problem of the ‘Superfluous Women’ 4. Women Organizing: Trade Unions and Other Industrial Organizations 5. Equal or Different? Divisive Issues in the Industrial Women’s Movement 6. Women’s Work Before the First World War 7. Out of the Cage? Women’s Experience of Work During the First World War 8. Women’s Work in the Interwar Period 9. Women’s Employment in World War Two: Continuity or Change? 10. Back to Home and Duty again? 11. Women’s Employment in the 1950s and 1960s 12. Women’s Work in the Age of Equal Opportunities: 1969 to the End of the Century 13. Women’s Work since the 1840s. Appendix 1: Chronology of Important Dates. Appendix 2: Brief Biographies of Some Key Women

About the Author

Gerry Holloway is a lecturer in Life History and Women's Studies at the Centre for Continuing Education at the University of Sussex. She has written extensively on women’s history and the feminist movement and is on the Committee of the Women’s History Network.

About the Series

Women's and Gender History

Recent years have witnessed a variety of challenges to the legitimacy of women's history, ranging from the deconstructions of French theory to the advent of 'gender' studies with its post-feminist implications. This series aims to re-establish women's history and to continue to challenge the assumptions of much mainstream history.

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
HISTORY / General
HISTORY / Modern / 20th Century