Synopses & Reviews
'It is my thesis that this general production of life, or subsistence production - mainly performed through the nonwage labour of women and other nonwage labourers as slaves, contract workers and peasants in the colonies - constitues the perennial basis upon which 'capitalist productive labour' can be built up and exploited'.
First published in 1986, Maria Mies' progressive book was hailed as a major paradigm shift for feminist theory and remains a major contribution to development theory and practice today
Tracing the social origins of the sexual division of labor it offers a history of the related processes of colonization and "housewifization" and extends this analysis to the contemporary new international division of labor. Mies' theory of capitalist patriarchy has become even more relevant today; this new edition includes a substantial new introduction in which she both applies her theory to the new globalized world and answers her critics.
"Feminist theory at its very best." - Off Our Backs
"Compelling. One of the most ambitious projects undertaken by a feminist scholar in recent years" - Deniz Kandiyoti
"Maria Mies' vision is huge, the scale of her project breathtakingly bold" - New Internationalist
"A major contribution to authentic development theory and practice. Women cannot hope for justice from a mode of production built on subordination either as housewife in the West or cheap labour in the third world. Mies produces an alternative feminist concept of labour and some strategic elements of its implementation. The critique is compelling" - World Development
About the Author
Maria Mies is a Marxist feminist scholar who is renowned for her theory of capitalist-patriarchy, which recognizes third world women and difference. She is a professor of sociology at Cologne University of Applied Sciences, but retired from teaching in 1993. Since the late 1960s she has been involved with feminist activism. In 1979, at the Institute of Social Studies in The Hague, she founded the Women and Development programme. Her other titles published by Zed Books include The Lace Makers of Narsapur (1982), Women: The Last Colony (1988), Patriarchy and Accumulation on a World Scale (1999), The Subsistence Perspective (1999) and Ecofemimism (2014)
Table of Contents
Foreword by Silvia Federici
Preface to the critique influence change edition
1. What is Feminism?
2. Social Origins of the Sexual Division of Labour
3. Colonization and Housewifization
4. Housewifization International: Women and the International Division of Labour
5. Violence Against Women and the Ongoing Primitive Accumulation of Capital
6. National Liberation and Women's Liberation
7. Towards a Feminist Perspective of a New Society