Archives de Tag: Wages for houseworks

Ruby gets excited when I tell her that I want to write a book about the local sex industry. “Forget wages for housework! How about wages for sex work?! That’s what we’re really valued for!” All agree that the truly feminist dimensions of sexual labor are too infrequently acknowledged. What about streetwalking? I ask. Is that feminist too? “What’s more feminist than run- ning away from an abusive father and declaring your own boundaries?” asks Anna. “As a prostitute, you learn to say no.” Eventually, everyone sits down at the small table in the kitchen to eat and drink wine and continue the conversation.

Elizabeth Bernstein, Temporarily Yours, Intimacy, Authenticity and the Commerce of Sex, The University of Chicago, 2007, p. 76

Wages for housework is only the beginning, but its message is clear: from now on they have to pay us because as females we do not guarantee anything any longer. We want to call work what is work so that eventu· ally we might rediscover what is love and create what will be our sexuality which we have never known.

Silvia Federici, Wages Against Housework, 1974

To ask for wages for housework will by itself undermine the expectations society has of us, since these expectations – the essence of our socialisation – are all functional to our wageless condition in the home.
In this sense, it is absurd to compare the struggle of women for wages to the struggle of male workers in the factory for more wages. The waged worker in struggling for more wages challenges his social role but remains within it. When we struggle for wages we struggle unambiguously and directly against our social role.

Silvia Federici, Wages Against Housework, 1974

They say it is love. We say it is unwaged work.
They call it frigidity. We call it absenteeism.

Every miscarriage is a work accident.

Homosexuality and heterosexuality are both working conditions…but homosexuality is workers’ control of production, not the end of work.

More smiles? More money. Nothing will be so powerful in destroying the healing virtues of a smile.

Neuroses, suicides, desexualization: occupational diseases of the housewife.

Silvia Federici, Wages against Housework, 1974.