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Women's Periodicals and Print Culture in Britain, 1918-1939The Interwar Period$
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Catherine Clay, Maria DiCenzo, Barbara Green, and Fiona Hackney

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9781474412537

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: September 2018

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9781474412537.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM EDINBURGH SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.edinburgh.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Edinburgh University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in ESO for personal use.date: 21 September 2021

Labour Woman and the Housewife

Labour Woman and the Housewife

(p.238) 15 Labour Woman and the Housewife
Women's Periodicals and Print Culture in Britain, 1918-1939

Karen Hunt

Edinburgh University Press

The chapter discusses how Labour Party women engaged with the newly-enfranchised housewife between the wars. It focuses on how Labour Woman represented the working-class housewife and the degree to which it enabled her to speak for herself. It chose everyday domestic life, traditionally assumed to be beyond politics, as the way to connect with unorganised women in their homes. In its Housewife Column the relevance of politics to women’s daily lives was explored through domestic topics such food prices, housework, washing and making clothes. Even with the increasing dominance of recipes and dress patterns in the 1930s, the journal continued to see the housewife as having agency and a distinct experience shaped by class. For Labour Woman interwar domesticity was neither cosy nor rationalised and modern, it was a space which provided the means to engage with the everyday lives of ordinary women.

Keywords:   Labour Woman, Labour Party, working class, housewife, domesticity, agency, everyday

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