ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

A+| A| A-

Work and Women's Identity

Experience and Identity by Anna
published by the Department of
History, Lund University, Sweden,

The work under review is a study of women and work in the cashew industry of Kerala. It is a welcome addition providing us an in-depth narrative of the life and times of the women in the workforce. The style of the work is far removed from that of conventional labour history studies in that it seeks to explore the new meanings of industrial work for women hailing from an agrarian background and their ramifications in the caste society in which they function.

The work tries to present the perspective of the women workers themselves and attempts to understand the nature of consciousness of the women that, in turn, creates/limits identity formation of these women. The result is that it incorporates, unlike mainstream works on labour history, a personalised presentation of the subjective experience of a variety of women in its very complex associations of time and space. The period explored (1930-2000) has witnessed fundamental changes in the nature of organisation of work: from the organised factory units of the early phase of industrialisation in the colonial economy to its substitution, in the main, by the emergence of the more profitable, unregulated ‘kudivarrappus’ (production in the unlicensed, unregistered sector) which came up in 1953 when minimum wages were to be implemented and has evolved further in the last decade of globalisation. This change has its relevance for the nature of work itself. Work has moved away from the earlier, secure confines of organised industry and organised/unionised workforce to the informal/unorganised sector where workers are deprived of both legislative protection and union support, leading to insecurity of employment.

Dear Reader,

To continue reading, become a subscriber.

Explore our attractive subscription offers.

Click here

Back to Top