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The Crossroads of Class and Gender

Industrial Homework, Subcontracting, and Household Dynamics in Mexico City

In this innovative exploration of the interaction between economic processes and social relations, Lourdes Benería and Martha Roldán examine the effect of homework on gender and family dynamics. Their fieldwork in Mexico City during 1981-82 has enabled them to provide important new empirical data on industrial piecework performed by women as well as intimate glimpses of these women’s lives which place that piecework in context. Tracing the stages of production from home to jobber, workshop, and manufacturer (often a multinational corporation), the authors demonstrate the way in which the work and lives of these women are connected through subcontracting to the national and often international system of production.

211 pages | 8 halftones, 11 line drawings, 1 map | 6 x 9 | © 1987

Women in Culture and Society

Economics and Business: Economics--International and Comparative

Gender and Sexuality

Sociology: Social Organization--Stratification, Mobility

Women's Studies

Table of Contents

Foreword, by Catharine R. Stimpson
Preface by Lourdes Benería
1. Introduction and Theoretical Framework
2. The Setting: Background Data and Methodology
3. Subcontracting Links and the Dynamics of Women’s Employement
Lourdes Benería
4. The Nature of Industrial Homework
Lourdes Benería
5. Class, Gender, and Work Trajectories
Appendix: Three Typical Work Histories
Martha Roldán
6. Class, Gender, and Asymmetrical Exchanges Within Households
Martha Roldán
7. The Marriage Contract: Renegotiation and Consciousness
Martha Roldán
8. Developments as If Women Mattered

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