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A Reversal of Fortunes?

Women, Work, and Change in East Germany

Rachel Alsop

176 pages, 10 tables, bibliog., index

ISBN  978-1-57181-965-9 $120.00/£85.00 Hb Published (May 2000)

ISBN  978-1-57181-771-6 $27.95/£19.00 Pb Published (May 2000)

eISBN 978-1-78533-003-2 eBook


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German unification brought fundamental, often traumatic changes for the people in eastern Germany. Women as a group were arguably more deeply affected by the changes than any other, and in one area in particular: that of work, which had far-reaching effects on them and their families' economic situation. Rachel Alsop critically examines the processes behind women's changing relationship to the labor market in eastern Germany following the collapse of state socialism and the transition to a market economy. By the 1980s women made up virtually half of the East German work force. The collapse of the GDR transformed the field of work, drastically diminishing the general demand for labor. Yet while economic and political restructuring reduced the volume of both male and female employment, it was women who bore the brunt of unemployment. In the immediate transitional period a re-masculinization of the workforce was evident, with women constituting the large part of the unemployed.

Using an extensive range of both quantitative and qualitative data, the author explores the gender dynamics of the social, economic, and political restructuring of eastern Germany, thereby producing an important new context in which to examine contemporary debates on gender and work.

Rachel Alsop is Lecturer in Gender Studies at the University of Hull.

Subject: Gender Studies Postwar History General Cultural Studies
Area: Germany

LC: HD6150.5 .A47 2000

BL: YC.2000.a.13081

BISAC: SOC032000 SOCIAL SCIENCE/Gender Studies; HIS037070 HISTORY/Modern/20th Century; SOC000000 SOCIAL SCIENCE/General

BIC: JFSJ1 Gender studies: women; HBLW3 Postwar 20th century history, from c 1945 to c 2000




Contents

List of Tables
List of Figures
Acknowledgements
List of Abbreviations
Glossary

Chapter 1. Introduction
Chapter 2. Rhetoric and Reality:Women’s Employment in the GDR
Chapter 3. The Unification Process
Chapter 4. Changing States: Redefining Women,Work and Welfare
Chapter 5. The ‘Defeminisation’ of Waged Labour
Chapter 6. Linking the Local and the Global: Women in the Textile and Clothing Industry
Chapter 7. Hearing Voices: Women’s Responses to Change
Chapter 8. Conclusions

Bibliography
Index

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