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WGSX Colloquium Event: Mary Hawkesworth 'Feminization, Commodification, Invisibilization - Gendered Labor in the 21st Century''
In her plenary address to the 1995 United Nations World Conference on Women in Beijing, Noeleen Heyzer, then-Director of UNIFEM, the United Nations Development Fund for Women, pointed out that "women work two-thirds of the world's working hours, but earn only one-tenth of the world's income and own less than one-tenth of the world's property." The striking disparity between hours worked and remuneration received reflects various factors. Two-thirds of the work women do is unwaged (compared to one-quarter of men's work). Occupational segregation by sex concentrates women in the lowest-waged and least-secure positions. Slightly more than 20% of all economically active women are employed in the industrial sector, while 75% are employed in the far less-well paid service sector. Women are overrepresented in the subsistence and informal (unstructured and unregulated) sectors of the economy and underrepresented in the formal sector, where pay levels are higher and fringe benefits may be provided. Women also constitute three-quarters of the part-time labor force, working for very low pay without any job security and little hope of upward mobility. Women continue to suffer systemic pay discrimination. Even in nations with equal pay legislation on the books, women earn less than men. This talk will explore contemporary gendered labor practices and consider their implications for meaningful work, individual self-development, and equitable economies in the twenty-first century.
Part of The 15th Annual WGSX Colloquium is titled "Overworked and Underpaid: Gendered Labor in the 21st Century."