Marxism Feminism Essay

861 words - 4 pages

Marxists reject the liberalists’ claims on the primacy of rationality. They argue that we are different from the animal kingdom because through work we produce our means of sustenance. We do this through two crucially interlinked material processes, namely, production and reproduction. Production refers to the tasks carried out by the members of a community to secure their basic needs such as food, clothing and shelter. Reproduction refers to the tasks of bearing children and bringing them up to accept and play their roles in the production process. The processes become interlinked in the sphere of reproduction where the family, through its attendant values such as support, companionship ...view middle of the document...

A good deal of women’s work, particularly domestic labour is not even recognized as work. The sight of a woman nursing a baby, hanging out the laundry, scrubbing the floor or blowing the grit out of her eyes as she stirs the pot is so common and deemed to be natural that it did not attract any scientific notice until recent times. Marxist feminism draws attention to the trivializing and taken-for granted status of domestic labour to point out that women’s work is considered ancillary and subordinate to the work that men do.
It shows how the institution of the modern family is related to capitalism, how women are generally given the most boring or low-paying jobs and how by apportioning the drudgery of housework and tending to infants to the female, the male frees himself to indulge himself in sport, creative and artistic expression while the woman remains limited to the confines of home for the greater part of her youth and creative life. The only way out of this situation is to quantify housework and socialize domestic labour. This was possible before the industrial revolution when the home was the site of all economic activity and members of the family worked together so that the work that women did such as childbearing, childrearing, cooking, pickling, washing and so much more was in no measure less than what men did. But with industrialization, the site of production shifted from the private household to the public workplace and women found them left behind with “unproductive” domestic work while men became “productive” wage...

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