Not Only the 'Dangerous Trades': Women's Work and Health in Britain, 1880-1914

Synopsis

Using original research and focusing on occupational ill-health in relation to women workers, this book presents a perspective for the analysis of both gender and work and work and ill-health. The author gives a critique of traditional theoretical accounts of gender relations, state intervention and industrial ill-health. The chapters examine the extent to which feminist activists got involved in debates about health and industrial work, and show how activists went beyond the concerns of suffrage.; The book presents a historical period which was marked by a change in the role of the state with respect to intervention in industrial conditions, and analyses the coincidence of this with three other significant developments: the growth of expertise in industrial disease; the employment of women in the factory to take on responsibilities in relation to other women; and changes in the direction of feminist activism. In light of this analysis, the author suggests that some theoretical approaches to both gender relations and health and safety requirements require modification.