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(en) France, Alternative Libertaire AL #282 - Feminism: Domestic exploitation, the basis of women's exploitation (fr, it, pt) [machine translation]

Date Mon, 30 Apr 2018 08:44:52 +0300

If we cross the statistics on inequalities at work with those within the private area, we see a very strong link between the two farms. No measure for more equality in the public sphere will be effective without a profound challenge to inequality in the private sphere. ---- Women's domestic life has two main characteristics: women spend much more time performing housekeeping and care work than men, and the work they do is very specialized. ---- Exploited at home ... ---- For a couple without children, the domestic task times are respectively 3:28 and 2:07 (quiz: which is 3:28 ?) ; for a couple with three children including one under three, we go to 7:14 and 3:26 (we talk about daily averages, including people in activity or not). In the same configurations, the care times for children are from 0h12 and 0h05 (without children) ; 3:29 and 0:55 (with three children). For the cleaning and shopping part, 2:59 and 1:17 ; 3:42 and 1:19, it should be noted that men are involved 2 minutes more in the household and shopping when they have three children than when they do not have.

The last INSEE Time Use Survey of 2010, from which these figures are extracted, divides the day into physiological time (eating, sleeping ...), work-training time, domestic time and free time. But where is the time for caring for the elderly and the sick ? Since almost all heterosexual women in a couple do almost all of these domestic chores and care, so it's their nature, concludes the company. Where we feminists and revolutionaries conclude rather than patriarchy, exploitation is well organized.

... so at work and in politics

The assignment of women to domestic chores is reflected in their concentration in few trades. Half of women are in a dozen occupations (out of 86 listed), while in the ten most masculine occupations there are only 30 % of men. And some trades are really very feminine. Home helpers, housekeepers and maternal assistants are 98 % women, the same for secretaries, 94 % of housewives are women (Dares 2011). Caregivers are 90 % women, nurses and midwives 88 %.

Women are, of course, over-represented in the household and personal care professions, as well as at home.

Since authority is naturally male, women are also overrepresented at the lower end of the hierarchy. Combined effects of the glass ceiling, which obstructs access to the highest functions and the sticky floor, which attaches women to menial tasks. Including judges or doctors of hospitals, or trade unionists.

The more women have children, and the smaller children, the more they give up their work. The activity rate (at work or job search) for women is 83 % in 2015, compared to 93 % for men. But only 63 % of married mothers with two children are working. For fathers in pairs, it is always more than 80 %, regardless of the number of children.

The part-time (" chosen " to reconcile or imposed) are 80 % occupied by women, and 30 % of them work part-time. That's good, it leaves time to clean up and take the kids to their activities and shop on the way.

Women hold crucial jobs for society. Keeping and raising children, ensuring the relationship in the shops, washing and feeding the sick in the hospitals, ensuring the tasks that allow the maintenance of the dependent people at home are tasks whose social utility is great and undeniable. Being part of the management of an agrochemical company, speculating on raw materials, flying warplanes are useless and dangerous trades. But it is not necessary to refer to the precise statistics to know that all the necessary " small " trades performed by women are poorly paid, very poorly paid.

On average, women earn more than 25 % less than men. 15 % can be explained by part-time, differences between occupations and sectors, places in the hierarchy and about 10 % can not be explained. Women receive 20 % of the highest salaries compared with 80 % of the lowest wages.

In all public areas, the distribution of missions assigned to women is also aligned with their domestic missions (even outsourced to other women). Ministry of Home Affairs, Ministry of Women's Health ; under-representation in elected bodies and in their direction (16 % of mayors, 10 only at the head of a department, 3 at the head of a region). While the attribution of these positions is not our battlefield, the fact remains that the inequalities in this field show how much women are still assigned to the private domain, the men in charge (with the success that we know) public affairs.

One solution: equal distribution
Domestic tasks are not all the same. The tasks of care must be recognized for their great social utility and to be insured on a voluntary or salaried basis by everyone. And the professions concerned must be revalued, recognized, well paid and exercised in dignified conditions. The household tasks, they must be abandoned by women for the part made for the benefit of men. Women no longer have to do the maintenance of men, nor the maintenance of children who have a father. Unlimited strike ? Shared single share ? The future feminist is to invent.

Christine (AL Sarthe)

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