September 10, 2022
7 tables, 1 chart
9.02 Inches (US)
6.10 Inches (US)
1.46 Pounds (US)
$95.00 USD, £68.00 GBP
v2.1 Reference

Women, Work, and Activism

Chapters of an Inclusive History of Labor in the Long Twentieth Century

The thirteen critical and well-documented chapters of Women, Work and Activism examine women's labor struggle from late nineteenth-century Portuguese mutual societies to Yugoslav peasant women's work in the 1930s, and from the Catalan labor movement under the Franco dictatorship to workplace democracy in the United States. The authors portray women's labor activism in a wide variety of contexts. This includes spontaneous resistance to masculinist trade unionism, the feminist engagement of women workers, the activism of communist wives of workers, and female long-distance migration, among others. The chapters address the gendered involvement of working people in multiple and often precarious and unstable labor relations and in unpaid labor, as well as the role of the state and other institutions in shaping the history of women's labor.

The book is an innovative contribution to both the new labor history and feminist history. It fully integrates the conceptual advances made by gender historians in the study of labor activism, driving home critiques of Eurocentric historiographies of labor to Europe while simultaneously contributing to an inclusive history of women's labor-related activism wherever to be found. Examining women's activism in male-dominated movements and institutions, and in women's networks and organizations, the authors make a case for a new direction in gender history.

About the Authors

Dr. Eloisa Betti is Adjunct Professor of Labor History at the University of Bologna. Leda Papastefanaki is Associate Professor of Economic and Social History at the University of Ioannina and Collaborating Faculty Member at the Institute for Mediterranean Studies – FORTH (Greece). She has published on the social and economic history of industrialization and labor in the Mediterranean context, and gender history.  Marica Tolomelli is Associate Professor at the University of Bologna. Her research focuses on social conflicts, social movements, and political cultures since the end of WWII until the end of the 20th century, and the history public spheres and the circulation of ideas in the "long 20th century" from a global perspective.  Susan Zimmermann is University Professor at Department of History and Department of Gender Studies, Central European University. Her research has focused on the history of the Habsburg Monarchy, international women's organizations in the 20th century, the ILO, and women and trade unions in state-socialist Hungary. She is President of the International Conference of Labour and Social History (ITH).


"'Women, Work, and Activism' ist ein einmaliger Sammelband, der das Potenzial des Forschungsfelds Gewerkschaftsgeschichte, Labor History und Geschlecht abwechslungsreich und vielschichtig darstellt. Es ist zu hoffen, dass hier ein erster Impuls gesetzt wurde, der weitere Arbeiten im Themenfeld inspiriert."—Sophia Kuhnle, Arbeit – Bewegung – Geschichte


"Women, Work, and Activism captures the intellectual energy and innovative thinking of feminist labor historians across Europe and beyond. This eye-opening collection models new theories of class and gender and dismantles outmoded assumptions, categories, and narratives in labor and feminist history. Written by an impressive mix of up-and-coming younger scholars and distinguished senior researchers, these essays are pioneering in their attention to new sites of working women's agency, their adoption of transnational methodologies, and their fluency with global scholarship in multiple fields and languages."

—Dorothy Sue Cobble

"By providing a rich range of examples of labor-related women's activism—from mutualism to conventional trade unionism, and from feminist workers to communist wives of workers—this volume demonstrates not only that 'activism' can be defined very differently in various contexts but also the myriad positions workers' politics can take vis-á-vis the politics of class and gender. There have been very few collected volumes on women's labor politics that could be compared to this book, and even less with a view back on the twentieth century as long as offered by this collection. Also, Women, Work, and Activism comes timely, at a pivotal moment for labor politics marked by structural changes in the labor market that will impact gender composition and gendered practices—a moment when we especially need to recognize and understand the history of women's labor activism."

—Samita Sen

9789633864418 : women-work-and-activism-betti-papastefanaki-tolomelli
368 Pages
$95.00 USD

Other Titles by Eloisa Betti

Precarious Workers

Eloisa Betti
Dec 2022 - Central European University Press
$85.00 USD - Hardback

Other Titles from Work and Labor – Transdisciplinary Studies for the 21st Century

Making and Breaking the Yugoslav Working Class

Goran Musić
May 2021 - Central European University Press
$85.00 USD - Hardback

Labor in State-Socialist Europe, 1945–1989

edited by Marsha Siefert
Jul 2020 - Central European University Press
$111.00 USD - Hardback

Other Titles in HISTORY / Women

Women and Work in the North-Eastern Adriatic

edited by Marta Verginella, Urška Strle
Jul 2024 - Central European University Press
$79.00 USD - Hardback

Texts and Contexts from the History of Feminism and Women's Rights

edited by Zsófia Lóránd, Adela Hîncu, Jovana Mihajlović Trbovc, Jovana Trbovc, Katarzyna Stańczak-Wiślicz
Apr 2024 - Central European University Press
$115.00 USD - Hardback

Entangled Emancipation

Alexandria Ruble
Dec 2023 - University of Toronto Press
$95.00 USD - Hardback
$39.95 USD - Paperback / softback

Other Titles in Social & cultural history

Czechoslovakia at the World's Fairs

Marta Filipova
Sep 2024 - Central European University Press
$76.00 USD - Hardback

Jewishness and Beyond

Miklós Konrád. Translated by Jason Vincz and the author.
Aug 2024 - Indiana University Press
$90.00 USD - Hardback
$50.00 USD - Paperback / softback

By Right of Memory

Geoffrey Hosking
Jul 2024 - Central European University Press
$121.00 USD - Hardback