Jones, Kimberly M. Gender and Deindustrialization: Conflict Between Female Roles and Women’s Work in Pittsburgh, PA, published in VOICES: the Journal of Feminist Anthropology, Fall 2005.
Abstract: The effect of deindustrialization on attitudes towards women’s work in Pittsburgh, PA is explored using narrative from twenty life history interviews of ex-steelworkers. Oral history is presented as an anthropological method capable of furthering feminist studies of masculine and feminine work experiences by attaining more democratic and humanistic accounts of historical events. Socio-cultural bias against women’s work outside the home is identified in the industrial and post-industrial settings. The importance of women’s work to economic security in the post-industrial period increases due to the instability of ex-workers employment after steel and the increasing prevalence of divorce. Findings indicate that cultural barriers against women’s work remain prevalent in Pittsburgh’s post-industrial cultural environment, despite the vast movement of women into the workforce.