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Waged & Unwaged Labor Struggles Are Still Feminist Fights, Y’all

October 16, 2012

inspired by Silvia Federici’s talk tonight — where she gave a feminist take on the financialization of reproductive work, as well of an overview of reproductive sector struggles from elder warehousing to education. came home, ate cookies, put beer in the fridge. then found this resonant testimonial on the web page of Mujeres Unidas y Activas (MUA), about its Caring Hands Workers’ Association.

“Before I took the Caring Hands training, I was economically dependent on my husband. He controlled me by determining how much money I would have. He refused to give me money for the bus, so I couldn’t go out. After I took the training, Caring Hands helped me to find work and I began to earn my own money. Now, I am free.”

—Caring Hands Graduate

Poignant evidence supporting Federici’s assertion that, contrary to the criticisms of the 1970’s Wages for Housework Campaign, efforts to win remuneration for women’s reproductive labor weren’t tainting the private sanctuary of the home. Rather, domestic social relations were already constructed around the withholding of the wage from reproductive and care work, typically done by women and always systematically devalued.

In other words, the introduction of wages for housework wouldn’t distort or shape social relations in the home any more than the absence of wages for housework already does.

Good food for thought! Now to drink one of these beers, plan my garden with a friend who’s helping me, and do a little organizing work before bed.

night, y’all.

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