For Work / Against Work
Debates on the centrality of work

A Materialist Feminism is possible

by Delphy, Christine; Leonard, D (1980)

Key Passage

do not say that women who have children are 'mothers' and therefore liable to be exploited. I say rather that because their work is appropriated women must raise children for nothing. I do not say that 'motherhood explains the appropriation of women's labour} but on the contrary that the appropriation of their labour, affected among other things through unpaid childcare, constitutes women as mothers. Thus motherhood, far from being a natural fact giving birth to exploitation, is a social construct created by exploitation (p.95)


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Domestic Labour, Christine Delphy



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