Gender division of labor, Historical development of...

Gender division of labor

The gender division of labor is one of the forms of the social division of labor, the basis of which is the idea of ​​what professions in each particular society are "male" and which are "female".

Some researchers believe that this form of division of labor does not exist at all, and there are only individual preferences about the choice of employment and profession. It should also be noted that this issue has traditionally been developed within the framework of economic anthropology and feminist sociology, from the point of view of the sociology of labor. In connection with this, in many textbooks on the sociology of labor this form of separation is often not considered. Although from the beginning of the mass production era, when women from the lower strata of the population began to work in large enterprises in industrialized countries, it became obvious that the individual choice of a place on the labor market was due, to a large extent, not to the personal decisions of the representatives of both sexes, but to public expectations, Labor should also be studied by representatives of the sociology of labor.

It's important to know!

There are two meanings of the gender - common and sociological. According to the first, gender is the difference between men and women but the sign of the biological sex. Sociologists believe that gender is a social construct.

Historical development of social forms of gender division of labor

The existence of a gender division of labor is evident for most known societies, but its manifestations and the degree of differentiation are socially and historically relative. This form is most characteristic of industrial societies and is accompanied by a difference between unpaid domestic and wage labor, between the private and public spheres.

The exception is the primitive society, in which, as archaeologists have proved, there was no inequality, including gender. The contribution of each member of the tribe to his life-support was equally valuable, and the determining factors were the physical capabilities of people. From this point of view, this society can be called egalitarian, although the well-known American expert in the field of social anthropology, Marshall Salins (born 1930), in the classic book, The Stone Age Economics, described some rudiments of the gender division of labor already in this society, fixing the hunt for men, and collecting - for women. It is important to bear in mind that, since there was no sociality in the modern sense of the word at that time, the differentiation was carried out according to the sexual principle, i.e. based on the physical capabilities of men and women.

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The economy of primitive society was an appropriating one. As the needs were undeveloped, they were satisfied quickly. Moreover, according to anthropologists, primitive people still had a lot of free time, which they had nothing to spend.

M. Salins called this period in the development of mankind "a society of primordial abundance", since those who did not want anything needed nothing. According to the scientist, the needs can be easily met in two ways: either want a little, or produce a lot. The latter statement refers to a market economy where, as some experts believe, the needs can not be limited at all, so a modern person needs to work at least 40 hours a week to at least to a small extent satisfy them. Summarizing, we can say that primitive society was self-sufficient from the economic point of view, and labor relations began in a situation of increasing needs.

The next stage in historical development within the framework of the gender approach was the formation of matriarchy . This process was due to the emergence of a sedentary lifestyle, which is associated with the domestication of animals and farming. Activities predetermined by the settled way of life were related to the life of women as the least mobile due to the physiological characteristics of the members of the community. Gathering was a more reliable source of food than hunting, in addition, the importance of motherhood was recognized - these factors made women the most respected members of society.

This position confirms the fact that the first image of the deity that the man created was the figures of the mother goddess. Archaeologists have found traces of matriarchy, relating to different times and different regions. The most ancient finds of the high role of women were found in Mesopotamia among the Sumerians and in ancient Egypt. Even in the XIX century. On the island of Sumatra, 20 million Muslims lived under the laws of maternity law. As for the regional differentiation of matriarchy, it is very large: Crete, North America and even Saudi Arabia. One of the first researchers of matriarchy was the Swiss historian Johann Jacob Bachofsn (1815-1887) - author of the book "Matriarchy".

An interesting fact.

Currently, anthropologists have proved the existence of Amazons in such regions of the world as the Caucasus, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan. This is additional evidence that at the stage of matriarchy, women played a more significant role than men. In all likelihood, in a primitive society, along with hunting, women warriors performed functions to protect the community.

It's important to know!

The most significant stage in the formation and development of the gender division of labor is patriarchy, i.e. the power of fathers, since it is at this stage that full-time labor becomes a socially useful activity.

"The basic factors in the formation of patriarchy were the division of labor, the development of private property and the formation of a traditional family, accompanied by the formation of appropriate customs and rights". . This means that since the Patriarchate has spread, a patriarchal family has formed, which until today is the dominant form of gender relations. The consequences of the gender division of labor, when the patriarchy began to dominate the relations between the sexes, were discrimination, segregation and division of labor in the household.

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