Van regionaal naar globaal. Wat kunnen we leren van internationaal vergelijkend historisch onderzoek naar arbeid en gender?

Authors

  • Elise Van Nederveen Meerkerk Universiteit Utrecht

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.18352/tseg.1126

Keywords:

arbeid, gender, global history

Abstract

This article aims to bring together three different long-term, global comparative studies on women’s work in three sectors: the textile industry, domestic service and sex work from the seventeenth century to today. Although there were notable differences between developments in these three occupations over time, it is clear that they all represent the ubiquitous precarity that runs through the history of work. Instead of viewing precarious labour as a novel development, history shows that the ILO model of ‘standard employment’ is an exception in history. Both in the Global North and in the Global South, at least half of the world’s historical population – women – often worked in underpaid, poorly organized jobs, under unequal power relations. However, despite these consistent practices of subordination, this article also highlights that within the given constrictions, female labourers who were formally powerless could exert considerable agency, using informal networks and power mechanisms that often emerged from the inherent intimacy of the labour relations they were involved in.

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Author Biography

Elise Van Nederveen Meerkerk, Universiteit Utrecht

Elise van Nederveen Meerkerk (1975) is hoogleraar Economische en Sociale Geschiedenis aan de Universiteit Utrecht en bijzonder hoogleraar Comparative History of Households, Gender and Work aan de Radboud Universiteit Nijmegen. Zij is gespecialiseerd in de geschiedenis van arbeidsverhoudingen, in het bijzonder vrouwen- en kinderarbeid. Elise publiceerde in tal van international tijdschriften, zoals Feminist Economics, de Economic History Review, de Journal of Social History en de International Review of Social History. Zij organiseerde diverse comparatieve arbeidshistorische samenwerkingsprojecten, over de arbeid van textielarbeid, kinderarbeid, huishoudelijk werk en prostitutie, die allen resulteerden in uitgegeven bundels (Brill, Ashgate, Peter Lang). In 2019 verscheen van haar hand Women, Work and Colonialism in the Netherlands and Java. Comparisons, Contrasts and Connections, 1830-1940 (Palgrave Macmillan).

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Published

2020-06-06

How to Cite

Van Nederveen Meerkerk, E. (2020). Van regionaal naar globaal. Wat kunnen we leren van internationaal vergelijkend historisch onderzoek naar arbeid en gender?. TSEG - The Low Countries Journal of Social and Economic History, 17(1), 77-96. https://doi.org/10.18352/tseg.1126