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Evelyn Nakano Glenn, “Racial Ethnic Women’s Labor: The Intersection of Race, Gender and Class Oppression”

February 13, 2011 1 comment

“Racial Ethnic Women’s Labor: The Intersection of Race, Gender and Class Oppression”

Evelyn Nakano Glenn

Review of Radical Political Economics Vol 17(3):86-108, 1985. [PDF]

INTRODUCTION

The failure of the feminist movement to address the concerns of Black, Hispanic and Asian-American women is currently engendering widespread discussion in white women’s organizations. Paralleling this discussion is a growing interest among racial ethnic women [1] in articulating aspects of their experiences that have been ignored in feminist analyses of women’s oppression (e.g. oral histories by Sterling 1979; Elessar, MacKenzie and Tixier y Vigil 1980; Kim 1983; and social and historical studies by Dill 1979; Mirande and Enriquez 1979; Davis 1981; Hooks 1981; Jones 1984). [2]

As an initial corrective, racial ethnic scholars have begun research on racial ethnic women in relation to employment, the family and the ethnic community, both historically and contemporarily (e.g. Acosta-Belen 1979; Mora and Del Castillo 1980; Melville 1980; Rodgers-Rose 1980; Tsuchida 1982). The most interesting of these studies describe the social world and day-to-day struggles of racial ethnic women, making visible what has up to now been invisible in the social sciences and humanities. These concrete data constitute the first step toward understanding the effects of race and gender oppression in the lives of racial ethnic women. Read more…

Marina Vishmidt, “Human Capital or Toxic Asset: After the Wage”

February 8, 2011 1 comment

“Human Capital or Toxic Asset: After the Wage”

Marina Vishmidt

Reartikulacija, 2010. [link]

This is a sequence of reflections on affirmation and negation, on identification and severance: determinate negation as strategic affirmation, the identification of concrete universals and severance from a defunct relation. These lines will be explored with reference to the current situation of the waged and unwaged working class, most proximately in Britain, as “debt” becomes the ideological white noise and the practical horizon of all social and political imagination. Household indebtedness is confused with the state deficit in the spontaneous ideology of the Conservative austerity agenda, as what remains of the crisis-riddled economy is sacrificed to the “debt” – as poor people to loan sharks, so Britain to the bond investors. The nationalist narrative of “we’re all in this together” eliminates any space for discussion as to who might bear greater responsibility for the crisis, and who should be paying for it. The announced cuts make it all too clear – it’s the bloated public sector and welfare payments which are responsible, and those that have the least shall have even that taken away, as the Biblical parable goes. Yet a fatalistic consensus prevails for now, transfixed by a menace beyond dispute: the “debt.” Read more…

María Ruido, “Just Do It! Bodies and Images of Women in the New Division of Labor”

February 8, 2011 Leave a comment

“Just Do It! Bodies and Images of Women in the New Division of Labor”

María Ruido

“Representation needs to be contextualized from several points. The representation of texts and images does not reflect the world as a mirror, mere translation of its sources, but is rather remodeled, coded in rhetorical terms. (…) Representation may be understood as a visible formal ‘articulation’ of social order “.

Griselda Pollock, Vision and Difference, 1994

 

FIRST INTRODUCTION

WORK> NON WORK: REDEFINITIONS FROM FEMINISM

“What do you do? What is your occupation?” Although every day we all reply quite easily to this apparently simple question, if we stop and carefully think what is our interlocutor demanding, we conclude that, in fact, what he/she really wants to know is the job we have or the activity or activities we make for a living and does not expect us at all to enumerate the wide range of actions, relations and productions that we unfold throughout the day.

Defining work and its limits in abstract terms at the present time, where the times and locations of production became blurred and extended, is not an easy task. However, experiencing its consequences on our bodies seems to be less complicated, especially if we consider a definition of work that goes beyond the economistic view (whether neoclassical or Marxist) and, especially, if we understand our sustainment of a daily life and our daily incorporation of personalities and social actions as spaces and (re)productive efforts. Everything that tires, that occupies, that disciplines and stresses our body, but also everything that constructs it, that takes care of it, that gives it pleasure and maintains it, is work. Read more…

CLR James, “On the Woman Question: An Orientation”

December 16, 2010 Leave a comment

“On the Woman Question: An Orientation”

CLR James

Source: An SWP discussion held on 3rd September 1951, opened by CLR James. [Link]

A new stage has been reached. We are finished with endless discussions on male chauvinism. We have no more time for individual attacks against individual men who are backward or against individual women who do not want to be “emancipated.” These people will reorient themselves and will be drawn into their own struggles.

Now for the first time we know where we are going. We did not develop accidentally. The ideas explicit in this document are the concrete manifestations of the movement of capitalism and the reaction of the masses of women today. It is this reaction that we shall attempt to concretize in this document. Read more…

Precarias a la Deriva, “Close encounters in the second phase: The communication continuum: care-sex-attention”

December 14, 2010 Leave a comment

“Close encounters in the second phase: The communication continuum: care-sex-attention”

Precarias a la Deriva

Nov. 2003 [link]

Ya, desde el famoso 11 de setiembre

Ya, en una guerra global permanente

Yo, que vivo en guerra cotidianamente

Yo salgo a las calles y digo que NO!

(to strike in A major, to the tune of “Yo te amo con la fuerza de los mares”)

POINT OF DEPARTURE

In the months that followed the “Grand Show” of December of 2002, we began to give shape to what all of us understood as a second phase in our exploration of women’s precarious work.  Some moved to other places and no longer shared the day to day of Precarias in Madrid, others joined the group or proposed particular initiatives: the publication of a text in a book or a web page, participation in a conference, collaboration in a video, or else accompanied us in organizing processes or in a mobilization.[1] This coming and going makes room for a mode of networked cooperation which is not so much about belonging, in this case to the group of Precarias, as it is about opening a field of communication and fluid action – sometimes perhaps too diffuse – which we hope will become a means of constructing a new space of aggregation: the Laboratory of Women Workers. Read more…

Precarias a la Deriva, “First Stutterings of ‘Precarias a la Deriva'”

December 14, 2010 Leave a comment

“First Stutterings of ‘Precarias a la Deriva'”

Precarias a la Deriva

April, 2003 [Link]

 

Trabajo flexible ¿Es que somos invisibles?

Trabajo inmaterial ¡Ay que estrés mental!

Trabajo de jornalera ¡Eso es la repera!

(Little song by Precarias a la Deriva in the General Strike of 20 June 2002)

THE PICKET-SURVEY

Precarias a la deriva (Precarious women workers adrift) is a collective project of investigation and action.  The concerns of the participants in this open project converged the 20th of June 2002, the day of the general strike called by the major unions in Spain.  Some of us had already initiated a trajectory of reflection and intervention in questions of the transformations of labor (in groups such as ‘ZeroWork’ and Sex, Lies and Precariousness, or individually), others wished to begin to think through these themes.  In the days before the strike we came together to brainstorm an intervention which would reflect our times, aware that the labor strike, as the culminating expression of a process of struggle, was unsatisfactory for us for three reasons: (1) for not taking up –and this is no novelty- the experience and the unjust division of domestic work and care, almost entirely done by women in the ‘non-productive’ sphere, (2) for the marginalization to which both the forms of action and the proposals of the strike condemn those in types of work –ever more common-  which are generally lumped together as ‘precarious’[1] and (3) for not taking into consideration precarious, flexible, invisible or undervalued work, specifically that of women and/or migrants (sexual, domestic, assistance, etc.).  As a friend recently pointed out in the context of the more recent ‘political’ strike against the war (April 10, 2003), “How do we invent new forms of striking when production fragments and dislocates itself, when it is organized in such a way that to stop working for a few hours (or even 24) does not necessarily effect the production process, and when our contract situation is so fragile that striking today means risking the possibility of working tomorrow?” Read more…

Christine Delphy, “Patriarchy, Domestic Mode of Production, Gender, and Class”

December 11, 2010 Leave a comment

“Patriarchy, Domestic Mode of Production, Gender, and Class”

Christine Delphy

Translated by Diana Leonard

Cary Nelson and Lawrence Grossberg, eds. Marxism and the Interpretation of Culture. Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1988. 259‐267. [PDF]

 

 

The analysis of patriarchy in our society that I have been developing for the last fifteen years has a history I would like to detail. I came to my use of the concept and to the model growing out of it by way of two projects whose theoretical concerns might seem unrelated. One project was to study the transmission of family property (patrimony), and the other was to reply to criticisms of the women’s liberation movement that come from the Left.

As it happened, when I started to do research on these two topics, I found that lack of relatedness was only apparent. This might have been predictable from the coherent commitment that had led me to these topics: I had wanted to work “on women,” which is to say, for me, on women’s oppression. Yet my director of studies at the time told me this was not possible, so I chose to study the inheritance of property instead, eventually to get back to my initial interest by an indirect route. In my research I first discovered what a great quantity of goods change hands without passing through the market; instead, these goods were passed through the family, as gifts or “inheritance.” I also discovered that the science of economics, which purports to concern itself with everything related to the exchange of goods in society, is in fact concerned with only one of the of systems of production, circulation, and consumption of goods: the market. Read more…

Categories: Feminisms, housework
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