"She Has Already Hinted at 'Board'": Enterprising Urban

Authors

  • Peter A. Baskerville

Abstract

Few studies exist of women's work outside (or inside) the household. Especially lacking are any detailed studies of those women who were self-employedand/oremployers of others. The general assumption is that women did not pursue such activity. This exploratory study attempts to show that some women in Victoria and Vancouver in the late nineteenth century were for a variety of reasons (economic necessity as well as free choice) attempting to balance two roles that society saw as being in conflict: tending a house and family and working in an independent business. The impact of the Married Women's Property Laws on this behaviour is assessed. The notion of separate spheres is qualified. The significance of studying enterprising women as a means of understanding family relations is suggested.

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Published

01.11.1992

Issue

Section

Articles