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Title: Slave women and work in the American South.
Author: Perrin, Liese.
ISNI:       0000 0001 3484 3688
Awarding Body: University of Birmingham
Current Institution: University of Birmingham
Date of Award: 1999
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This thesis examines slave women's work in the American South in order to ascertain the presence, extent, and nature of gendered divisions of labour, It argues that divisions of labour in field work were not as prevalent as previously thought, and that they depended on a number of factors including plantation size, crop type and season. The thesis also examines house work and argues that although gendered divisions of labour were far more apparent in this environment the important division between field slaves and house slaves was based on status rather than gender. This study interprets reproduction as a form of labour, and discusses the issue of production versus reproduction, and also slave women's resistance to reproduction, in particular through the use of birth control. Chapters on the work slaves performed for themselves, and the work they performed after freedom suggest that slave men and women subscribed to a clear gender ideology, and that it influenced gendered divisions of labour. However, they were pragmatic about its application, discarding divisions of labour whenever economic pressures dictated. The overarching theme of this thesis is that slave men and women more frequently worked together than apart and, as a consequence were able to form supportive relationships, rather than relying exclusively on their own sex for emotional and practical succour.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available