The Rationalisation of Housework

  • Leonore Davidoff


This chapter is an attempt to put forward some very preliminary ideas about a subject which, until a few years ago was not only neglected but, on all levels, treated with contempt. The idea of asking serious questions about housework seemed unthinkable. Until about 1970, only the amusing and provocative American piece by Pat Mainardi, The Politics of Housework circulated within the women’s movement, even raised the issue.1 She ends with her husband saying: ‘Housework? Oh my God, how trivial can you get. A paper on housework!’


Nineteenth Century Eighteenth Century Domestic Work Domestic Life Sexual Division 
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Copyright information

© Leonore Davidoff 1991

Authors and Affiliations

  • Leonore Davidoff

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