White, Male & Middle Class: Explorations in Feminism & History // Review

By Hall, Catherine | Resources for Feminist Research, Spring/Summer 1993 | Go to article overview

White, Male & Middle Class: Explorations in Feminism & History // Review


Hall, Catherine, Resources for Feminist Research


Reviewed by Wendy Stocker Project Ploughshares Conrad Grebel College Waterloo, Ontario

Catherine Hall is Reader in Cultural Studies at the Polytechnic of East London. She is also a self - declared feminist, a British Marxist historian in the tradition of the Co mmunist Party Historians' Group that includes Christopher Hill and Edward Thompson, a middle - class, white woman married to a non - white man, and the mother of mixed - race children. In the first of ten essays which make up this book, she provides a critique of her work as an hi storian, finding significant connections between her early training in materialist, socialist his tory, her position as a working woman professional, and her family life, on the one hand, and the f ocus of her academic interest on the other. After reading her opening essay, it is easy to understand why she would be drawn to such topics as "The History of the Housewife," "The Butche r, the Baker, the Candlestick - maker: The Shop and the Family in the Industrial Revolution," and "Missionary Stories: Gender and Ethnicity in England in the 1830s and 1840s." From her own development as a woman and a professional, from her position in contemporary Bri tish society, she has developed a desire to understand the connections between gender and cult ure, gender and class, gender and work. These topics are the concern of the middle six essa ys in the book. Finally, the last two essays look at "the shifting and contingent relations of g ender, class, race and ethnicity between the 1830s and the 1860s."

The essays focus on the period between 1780 and 1850 in England -- a period when, as Hall describes it, the middle - class male became a dominant figure in British politi cs, business and industry. The period brought great change in the role of the woman in the famil y structure and in society. From an active participant in a family - run and home - centred bus iness, the working - class and middle - class woman became, by the end of the period, an id ealized figure designed by God to keep the hearth and home a sacred refuge for her husband from the wickedness of the outside world. Hall shows, however, that as she gained in mor al stature, the middle - class woman lost ground as a contributor to the family resources, so th at by the end of the period under examination, "respectable" women who needed to support thems elves had few opportunities to earn a living and little training for existing jobs. This p redicament of nineteenth - century women is brought to life in "Strains of the 'Firm of Wife, Children and Friends': Middle - class Women and Employment in Early Nineteenth - century Eng land." As well, women were further marginalized from public life as middle - class men bec ame more and more involved in an active political life -- a life for which women were conside red totally unsuitable.

We see that to be "middle - class" meant something radically different for men and women. We see a move to the suburbs, but the men still left in the morning to work in t he city, while the women remained behind, separated from the source of their livelihood. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

White, Male & Middle Class: Explorations in Feminism & History // Review
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.