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Glorified housekeepers or pioneering professionals? the professional lives of home science graduates from the University of New Zealand

Glorified housekeepers or pioneering professionals? the professional lives of home science... Contemporary scholarship has enabled a deeper analysis of the dynamics that gave rise to professional home science and a greater understanding of the obstacles women encountered and the strategies they employed to gain legitimacy as the field developed in the twentieth century. This paper examines how home science moved from its origins as ‘glorified housekeeping’ to encompass the ‘professional and ‘scientific’ dimensions of women’s lives. It goes beyond judgments about whether home science ‘helped’ or ‘hurt’ women, and asks instead, what we can learn from a study of the professional lives of women working in the highly gendered domains of academia, the professions and education? The article documents the scientific and professional lives of two women, E. Neige Todhunter and Emere Makere Waiwaha Kaa Mountain who completed qualifications at the Faculty of Home Science, Otago University in the 1920s and 1930s as a way of offering new insights into the professionalisation of women and a rethinking of the relationship between women and household science in the twentieth century. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png History of Education Review Emerald Publishing

Glorified housekeepers or pioneering professionals? the professional lives of home science graduates from the University of New Zealand

History of Education Review , Volume 37 (2): 12 – Oct 14, 2008

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © 2008 Emerald Group Publishing Limited. All rights reserved.
ISSN
0819-8691
DOI
10.1108/08198691200800009
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Contemporary scholarship has enabled a deeper analysis of the dynamics that gave rise to professional home science and a greater understanding of the obstacles women encountered and the strategies they employed to gain legitimacy as the field developed in the twentieth century. This paper examines how home science moved from its origins as ‘glorified housekeeping’ to encompass the ‘professional and ‘scientific’ dimensions of women’s lives. It goes beyond judgments about whether home science ‘helped’ or ‘hurt’ women, and asks instead, what we can learn from a study of the professional lives of women working in the highly gendered domains of academia, the professions and education? The article documents the scientific and professional lives of two women, E. Neige Todhunter and Emere Makere Waiwaha Kaa Mountain who completed qualifications at the Faculty of Home Science, Otago University in the 1920s and 1930s as a way of offering new insights into the professionalisation of women and a rethinking of the relationship between women and household science in the twentieth century.

Journal

History of Education ReviewEmerald Publishing

Published: Oct 14, 2008

Keywords: Housekeeping; Home science; Home economics; Gender; Women; Social history

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