The effects of the fishery crisis on the domestic division of labour in Trepassey, Newfoundland

Chapman, Tanya (1997) The effects of the fishery crisis on the domestic division of labour in Trepassey, Newfoundland. Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

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Abstract

The objective of this thesis is to examine the effects of the fishery crisis on the domestic division of labour in a fishing community in Newfoundland, Canada. More specifically, this research will examine how the crisis affected the amount of time people spent on household tasks and the kind of tasks that they performed. Following a materialist perspective, the study focuses on how the loss of paid employment in the public sphere impacted upon unpaid domestic labour in the private sphere. -- Information for this thesis is based on personal interviews and observations earned out in Trepassey, Newfoundland. Interviews were conducted with 36 fishery people (12 female plant workers, 12 male plant workers and 12 offshore fishermen) to determine how the fishery crisis affected their involvement in domestic labour. -- The findings suggest that the fishery crisis resulted in changes in the domestic division of labour in fishery family households. On average, fishery people spent more time on domestic labour and performed more domestic tasks since the fishery closures. The changes, however, affected female plant workers differently than the male plant workers and offshore fishermen. Among female plant workers, womens' increased responsibility for domestic labour resulted in a more segregated domestic division of labour. Since womens’ loss of paid employment in the public sphere, most of their male partners relinquished some of their responsibilities in the private sphere, especially with respect to routine housework and child care. On the other hand, among the male plant workers and offshore fishermen affected by the crisis, mens’ increased responsibility for domestic labour resulted in a less segregated domestic division of labour. While fishery men contributed more to domestic labour since the closures, there was only a few exceptional cases where these men contributed equally with their female partners. That is, despite the changes discussed throughout this thesis, the fundamental gender-based division of domestic labour continues to exist. -- These findings suggest that further research needs to be earned out on the social impacts of the fishery crisis on fishery family households. That is, if the crisis has affected the domestic division of labour, then there are probably other social issues, such as the incidence of domestic violence and alcoholism, that need to be addressed to minimize the negative effects of the fishery crisis on the social lives of fishery people.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
URI: http://research.library.mun.ca/id/eprint/830
Item ID: 830
Additional Information: Bibliography: leaves 161-168.
Department(s): Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of > Sociology
Date: 1997
Date Type: Submission
Geographic Location: Canada--Newfoundland and Labrador--Avalon Peninsula--Trepassey
Library of Congress Subject Heading: Sexual division of labor--Newfoundland and Labrador--Trepassey; Cod fisheries--Social aspects--Newfoundland and Labrador--Trepassey

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