Feminist Economics - RAG workshop - 17 July 2013

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Slides for talk in Seomra Spraoi, organised by RAG.

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  • * Yet 6 out of 10 Traveller children live in a family where their mothers have no formal education or some primary education only.
  • Feminist Economics - RAG workshop - 17 July 2013

    1. 1. Dr.Conor McCabe, Equality StudiesCentre, UCD 17 July 2013 Feminist Economics
    2. 2. 1. Societies are relational.
    3. 3. 1. Societies are relational. 2. The endless accumulation of capital is inherently destructive in terms of humanity and the environment.
    4. 4. 1. Societies are relational. 2. The endless accumulation of capital is inherently destructive in terms of humanity and the environment. 3. The capitalist mode of production is a patriarchal mode of production – ‘economic man’ saturates its conceptual framework.
    5. 5. It’s one thing to say people interact with to each other…
    6. 6. Another to say people interact with each other solely through profit-seeking markets
    7. 7. Closing down of Dissent - Attacks on Equality in Ireland Equality Bodies – closed down or with reduced Budgets  Combat Poverty Agency –closed 2008 incorporated into the Department of Social Protection  Equality Authority – 2009 43% cut and now being merged with the Human Rights Commission  Women’s Health Council – closed 2009  Crisis Pregnancy Agency – closed and merged with the Health Service Executive  Irish Human Rights Commission -Budget cuts since 2009 and merged with Equality Authority  Equality for Women Measure - co-funded by EU Operational Programme ---budget partly transferred out of this area and now under Dept. For Enterprise, Trade and Employment  National Consultative Committee on Racism and Interculturalism (NCCRI) _Closed 2009  Gender Equality desk at the Department (Ministry) of Justice, Equality and Law Reform – Desk Closed 2009  Gender Equality Unit – Department of Education – Closed early 2000s  Higher Education Equality Unit – UCC -Closed and merged into Higher Education Authority (early 2000s)  National Women’s Council of Ireland -158 member organisations- budget cuts of 15% in 2008-11 and 38% in 2012  Traveller Education cutbacks 2011 and 2012 – all 42 Visiting teaches for Travellers removed*  Rape Crisis Network Ireland – core Health Authority Funding removed 2011  SAFE Ireland network of Women’s’ Refuges - core Health Authority Funding removed 2011  People With Disabilities in Ireland's (PWDI) - funding removed 2012  National Carers’ Strategy – abandoned 2009 Kathleen Lynch, Equality Studies UCD School of Social Justice 17
    8. 8. Gender and Caring Notes on Lynch and Lyons, ‘The Gendered Order of Caring’ in Ursula Barry (ed) Where Are We Now? New Feminist Perspectives on Women in Contemporary Ireland (Dublin: Tasc, 2008)
    9. 9. There are deep gender inequalities in the doing of care and love work that operate to the advantage of men. It is women’s unwaged labour and related domestic labour that frees men up to exercise control in the public sphere of politics, the economy and culture. … there is a moral imperative on women to do care work that does not apply equally to men ; a highly gendered moral code impels women to do the greater part of primary caring, with most believing they have no choice in the matter.
    10. 10. The reason love and care matter is because we are relational beings, emotional as well as intellectual, social as well as individual. P.165 Feminist-inspired scholars have drawn attention to the salience of care and love as public goods, and have identified the importance of caring as a human capability meeting a basic human need. (1) They have also exposed the limitations of conceptualisations of citizenship devoid of a concept of care, and highlighted the importance of caring as work, work that needs to be distributed equally between women and men in particular. 1. Nassbaum, Glover (eds) Women, Culture and Development: A Study of Human Capabilities (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1995)
    11. 11. The Irish government collects data on unpaid caring within households in 1. the Census 2. the Quarterly Household Survey (QNHS). Within the Census, care is defined as being given by ‘persons aged 15yrs and over who provide regular unpaid help for a friend or family member with a long-term illness, health problem or disability (including problems due to age). P.167-8
    12. 12. The way care is defined in the Census excludes what constitutes a major category of care work, that of the ordinary, everyday care of children (unless the child has a recognised disability). Data on the care of children is compiled in the QNHS, however, and is also available through the European Community Household Panel (ECPH) survey. The focus in all three is on the hours of work involved in caring so we do not know the nature and scope of the caring involved. P.168
    13. 13. According to the [2006] Census there are less than 150,000 people, 5 per cent of the adult population in unpaid care work (mostly with adults) of whom 61 per cent are women and 39 per cent are men. However, when we measure all types of caring activity, as has been done in the European Community household Panel (ECPH) we see that there are 1 million people who do caring who are not named in the census.
    14. 14. Even though it is no doubt unintentional, the failure to collect data on hours spent on child care work in the Census, means that child care, which is the major form of care work in Irish society, is no counted in terms of work hours. … women are almost five times as likely to work long care hours than is the case for men. Women spend much more time at care work than men, even when they are employed.
    15. 15. Over the past thirty years, despite their being essential to human life, neoliberal restructuring across the world has privatised, eroded and demolished our shared resources, and ushered in a ‘crisis of social reproduction.’ ‘Cuts are a Feminist Issue’, Soundings (Dec 2011), p.73.
    16. 16. The term social reproduction encompasses all the means by which society reproduces its families, citizens and workers. It includes all the labour that is necessary for a society to reproduce itself: the biological production of people and workers, and all the social practices that sustain the population – bearing children, raising children, performing emotional work, providing clothing and food, and cooking and cleaning.
    17. 17. The term social reproduction encompasses all the means by which society reproduces its families, citizens and workers. It includes all the labour that is necessary for a society to reproduce itself: the biological production of people and workers, and all the social practices that sustain the population – bearing children, raising children, performing emotional work, providing clothing and food, and cooking and cleaning. As a concept social reproduction has been key to feminist social theory, because it challenges the usual distinctions that are made between productive and reproductive labour, or between the labour market and the home.
    18. 18. The term social reproduction encompasses all the means by which society reproduces its families, citizens and workers. It includes all the labour that is necessary for a society to reproduce itself: the biological production of people and workers, and all the social practices that sustain the population – bearing children, raising children, performing emotional work, providing clothing and food, and cooking and cleaning. As a concept social reproduction has been key to feminist social theory, because it challenges the usual distinctions that are made between productive and reproductive labour, or between the labour market and the home. Labour in this sphere is often devalued and privatised, and is typically performed by women in their ‘double day’ or ‘second shift’, alongside paid wage labour. But reproductive labour of this kind is just as central to capitalist accumulation as are other forms of labour, which means that struggles over its structure and distribution are fundamental to any understanding of issues of power and the relationships between labour and capital, as well as the potential for their transformation.
    19. 19. Social Reproduction Renewing life is a form of work, a kind of production, as fundamental to the perpetuation of society as the production of things. Moreover, the social organization of that work, the set of social relationships through which people act to get it done, has varied widely and that variation has been central to the organization of gender relations and gender inequality. From this point of view, societal reproduction includes not only the organization of production but the organization of social reproduction, and the perpetuation of gender as well as class relations. Barbara Laslett and Johanna Brenner, ’ Gender and Social Reproduction: Historical Perspectives,’ Annual Review of Sociology, Vol. 15 (1989): 383
    20. 20. 11 May 2010 Dear Chief Secretary, I'm afraid to tell you there's no money left. Sincerely, Liam Byrne. chief secretary to the Treasury.
    21. 21. “The British Government has run out of money because all the money was spent in the good years.” George Osborne, 25 February 2012
    22. 22. “So we cannot just carry on as we are. Unless we reform our economy - rebalance demand, restructure banking, and restore the sustainability of our public finances - we shall not only jeopardise recovery, but also fail the next generation.” Mervyn King,TUC Conference, 15 September 2010.
    23. 23. 5 March 2009. QE : £75 billion 10 October 2011. QE : £75 billion 2009 – 2011. corporate bond purchase via asset purchase facility : £375 billion 2012: Monetary Policy Committee approve a further £50 billion. “So we cannot just carry on as we are. Unless we reform our economy - rebalance demand, restructure banking, and restore the sustainability of our public finances - we shall not only jeopardise recovery, but also fail the next generation.” Mervyn King,TUC Conference, 15 September 2010.
    24. 24. Long Term Refinancing Operations (LTRO) 21 December 2011: €489.2 billion to 523 banks – 3yrs @ 1 per cent 29 February 2012: €529.5 billion to 800 banks – 3yrs @ 1 per cent
    25. 25. Long Term Refinancing Operations (LTRO) 21 December 2011: €489.2 billion to 523 banks – 3yrs @ 1 per cent 29 February 2012: €529.5 billion to 800 banks – 3yrs @ 1 per cent “Some banks, particularly in Spain and Italy, used portions of those funds to buy higher-yielding bonds issued by their governments at a time when most investors remained skittish, and it helped reduce government borrowing costs. But many banks primarily used the funds to pay down maturing debts or simply deposited the money at other banks or with the ECB itself, even though they yield less. The infusion fell short of some politicians' hope that it would stimulate bank lending to customers in struggling European economies.” Wall Street Journal, 1 March 2012

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