Classification of women’s work 3

Whether the woman works in a poor, subsistence economy or whether she works in a modern household in an industrialized economy, both women have three things in common in their respective working lives. These are:

1. Both perform a large variety of tasks during single working day.
2. Both work typically for a longer working day than their male counterpart at home or at workplace; and their female counterparts who do not have a paid job and
3. Both have very little economic value attached to their output at home and at the workplace.

Marxist economists have often pointed out that the housewives with their work actually subsidize capitalism which could never have survived without the unpaid services of the wife as breeder-feeder. In fact, a woman’s unpaid labor subsidizes all types of economic systems. Women’s services within the home are as essential as they are invisible. They predate the entry of women into the formal economic market plan and have yet remained out of it even in modern industrialized societies.

Women who do not engage in paid work in the market and are only confined to house work are casually treated by economists and statisticians as people who are “not economically activeā€¯. Even when women enter the labor force, they continue to do the work of the household which remains unpaid, unrecognized and to a large extent unaided.