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Wed 18 March
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    14.00 - 16.00
    16.30 - 18.30

Thu 19 March
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Fri 20 March
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Sat 21 March
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Wednesday 18 March 2020 08.30 - 10.30
N-1 WOM22 Moving across the Border: Gender and Networking
Lipsius, 005
Network: Women and Gender Chairs: -
Organizers: - Discussants: -
Georgeta Nazarska : The Cross-Border Religious Networks in the Near East and Bulgarian Women (First Half of the 20th Century)
This paper will study migrations of citizens by Bulgarian origin to the Palestine, Syria, Lebanon, and Egypt in the first half of the 20th century, and particularly activities of women within the Orthodox, Catholic, and Protestant cross-border religious networks.
The study, taking in account the multicultural environment of the Near ... (Show more)
This paper will study migrations of citizens by Bulgarian origin to the Palestine, Syria, Lebanon, and Egypt in the first half of the 20th century, and particularly activities of women within the Orthodox, Catholic, and Protestant cross-border religious networks.
The study, taking in account the multicultural environment of the Near East and using historical and prospographical analysis, treats women’s activities in the pilgrimage movement in the 1920s-1940s from Bulgaria to Palestine, work of the Catholic nuns at the local hospitals and schools, and nurses' education in the Near East's protestant colleges. The accent is put on interaction within the networks and on transnational relations, which facilitated cultural exchange and transfer of social practices.
The paper is based on predominantly unknown archival documentation and investigates a topic, which is not studied yet by the national historiography. It uses the comparative approach in order to underline input of Bulgarian female religious figures to the Orthodox pilgrimage movement, to their own Catholic orders and to the Near East Foundation educational activities. (Show less)

Stephen Patnode : “I am the Head here”: Gender and the Experience of American Workers in Europe in the 1970s
In 1974, the New York Times reported on an experimental worker exchange program that sent a small group of American manufacturing employees to a Saab-Scania assembly plant in Sodertalje, Sweden. The Times declared, “5 of 6 U.S. Auto Workers Dislike Swedish System”. Funded by the Ford Foundation, ... (Show more)
In 1974, the New York Times reported on an experimental worker exchange program that sent a small group of American manufacturing employees to a Saab-Scania assembly plant in Sodertalje, Sweden. The Times declared, “5 of 6 U.S. Auto Workers Dislike Swedish System”. Funded by the Ford Foundation, the program sought to expose Americans to “new forms of worker participation” in Sweden. Unfortunately, coverage in the Times and other media outlets suggested that the trial had failed in part because petulant-sounding Americans did not want to keep up with the hectic pace of innovative Swedish production methods. One American participant noted that work routines in the US were more relaxed and concluded, “It’s too fast here.” On a basic level, contemporary coverage of the Ford Foundation’s program viewed the results through a traditional lens of labor relations.
However, reexamining the case of the Swedish exchange and contemporaneous exchanges with other European partners in locations as diverse as London and Amsterdam reveals that gender played a key role in framing the experiences of the American workers. Working in very different national settings such as Sweden or the United Kingdom forged a keen awareness among Americans of their own norms and values. For some Americans, encountering ideas and practices that differed from their own strengthened convictions in the superiority of what they came to identify as “American” practices. However, examining first-hand accounts also reveals a complex flow of ideas and identities around the axis of gender. Fascinating connections emerge between men, women, gender identities, and American nationalism. The American men thought Saab-Scania’s personnel policies were too paternalistic, limiting their ability to assert manly autonomy in the workplace. The American women were more ambivalent, particularly given that the innovative Swedish group of assembly workers was composed entirely of women. Some Americans came away from the exchange experience with a newfound appreciation for transnational approaches to problem solving. (Show less)

Jennifer Redmond : Moral Philanthropy for Irish Emigrant Women in the 19th Century: the Case of Charlotte Grace O'Brien
This paper seeks to examine the world of emigrant philanthropy by looking at the life of Charlotte Grace O’Brien. Many know her name given the political prominence of her family in Ireland, and some know her as a novelist, but there has been very little scholarly work on her despite ... (Show more)
This paper seeks to examine the world of emigrant philanthropy by looking at the life of Charlotte Grace O’Brien. Many know her name given the political prominence of her family in Ireland, and some know her as a novelist, but there has been very little scholarly work on her despite the significance of her work in the realm of emigrant welfare in the nineteenth century.

O’Brien is a woman who single-handedly improved conditions for Irish emigrants on ships travelling from Ireland to the United States in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century; in conjunction with the Catholic Church, she also helped to found one of the best known hostels for emigrant women in New York that would shelter women immigrating on their own and provide them with connections to employment; appalled at the exorbitant prices charged to vulnerable emigrants in port towns, she set up her own boarding house in Cobh; she was also a writer of some renown, her novel, Light and Shade, based on Irish Fenians, was critically acclaimed internationally. For all this she is most widely credited in published histories (if she is mentioned at all) as the daughter of William Smith O’Brien, famed for his failed revolutionary activities and his political prominence. Few accounts of her life currently exist. The fullest was completed by her relative, Stephen Gwynn in 1909, shortly after her death and features her poems as well as a brief biographical account in which her achievements are praised, but he also claimed that her life was left “starved” by not becoming a wife and mother. I believe the time has come for a reappraisal of this extraordinary woman. O’Brien made her mark on the world despite suffering from significant hearing loss and operating within the constraints placed on women in her era
This paper questions some of the class assumptions she appears to make in published statements about emigrants from Ireland, as well as fully appraising her life, distinct from her familial roles as companions to male relatives. Emigration was at an accelerated pace in the post-Famine era, and Irish women became renowned for emigrating in large numbers as single women, not as part of family groups as was the case for migrants from other European countries. Safeguarding emigrant girls at ports, stations and on ships emerged as part of the panoply of philanthropic initiatives in this period run by affluent women along religious lines that were aimed at both the protection and “betterment” of working-class women. The organizations that were set up to shield girls from improper behaviour on their journeys (both their own and others) were regarded as imperative, as immoral misconduct was thought to be a significant factor in the “downfall” of some emigrant women. O'Brien was keenly aware of this rhetoric and felt that the conditions on board ships to America were not only unsanitary but potentially immoral, allowing for the mixing of the sexes with no segregation between married men and single women. The late nineteenth century also saw fears for women migrants because of the 'white slave trade', and while the world of professional prostitution was always looking for fresh victims as many scholars have covered, the late nineteenth century saw a number of cases where immigrant women were duped into working in brothels on the pretext of domestic work. In my work, I have argued against the perception that this was a widespread problem, and certainly the rhetoric about Irish emigrant women falling for such nefarious plots was out of proportion to the number of cases, but the cases did indeed exist. O'Brien was determined to eradicate vice and provide for better material comforts for all emigrants on their journeys across the ocean. Unusually in this landscape of emigrant philanthropy, O'Brien even went “under cover” to investigate boarding houses, what it was like to travel in a third-class carriage, and the experience of steerage on a ship. Given her wealth and status, this is highly unusual behaviour and speaks to the exceptionalism of her character. (Show less)

Conchi Villar, Antonio López-Gay & Kenneth Pitarch : Living in the Working-class Outskirts: Migration, Living Conditions and Gender in the 1930 Barcelona
The first groups of social housing ever built in Barcelona, at the end of the 1920s, have mostly attracted until now the interest of geographers. These contributions mainly focus on the urban forms and the housing characteristics of these residential groups. The attention that they have received from the fields ... (Show more)
The first groups of social housing ever built in Barcelona, at the end of the 1920s, have mostly attracted until now the interest of geographers. These contributions mainly focus on the urban forms and the housing characteristics of these residential groups. The attention that they have received from the fields of Demography or Social and Economic History is scarce. We know little, therefore, about the socioeconomic composition of their population and their living conditions. This paper aims at providing empirical evidence in these aspects and has two major objectives. First, to analyze the socioeconomic composition of the first generation of people who lived in the Ramon Albo housing group, one of the first examples of social housing in the city (around 500 dwellings and more than 2,000 inhabitants). Second, to explore their living arrangements and social conditions. To carry on this study, we have transcribed the 100% of the population registered in the analyzed area in the 1930 Population Census. We have included all the available variables: (i) demographic (age and sex), which will allow us overcome the existing gender bias in the previous literature on the living conditions of the working class in the early 1930s in Barcelona (due to the use of heads of household as a unit of analysis), (ii) socioeconomic (literacy and profession), (iii) nativity status, and (iv) family arrangements and types of household. According to the contemporary press, the residents of this type of housing groups were part of an immigrant and illiterate lumpen whose living conditions were absolutely deplorable. We aim at corroborating this, as well as to check if there were differences in the levels of living standards and in the family strategies to survive based on the age and sex of: a) the heads of families and b) the household typologies. (Show less)



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