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To Live to WorkFactory Women in Colonial Korea, 1910–1945$
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Janice C.H. Kim

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780804759090

Published to Stanford Scholarship Online: June 2013

DOI: 10.11126/stanford/9780804759090.001.0001

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Modernization and the Rise of Women's Wage Work

Modernization and the Rise of Women's Wage Work

(p.50) Two Modernization and the Rise of Women's Wage Work
To Live to Work
Stanford University Press

This chapter presents an overview of the peninsula's historical and geopolitical background, and reviews the progressions of colonial economic development and the emergence of women's wage work from the late 1910s to the 1930s. It also tries to provide broad numerical and proportional sketches of colonial workers in general and wage-earning women in particular. A woman's role in household production relied on her marital status and life stage; responsibilities also differed for mothers and daughters. It is also noted that women's contributions to political economies were driven by familial, personal ties. The economic position, landholdings, and status of the husband in premodern Korea influenced the work of their wife. Married women could work in industrial sectors and settings, and in the service industry. Furthermore, most unmarried working women in early twentieth-century Korea could not depend on networks of kin to provide for their future welfare and therefore relied on themselves.

Keywords:   wage work, wage-earning women, household, Korea, married women, unmarried working women, welfare

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