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Women in forestry in the early twentieth century - new opportunities for young women to work and gain their freedom in a traditional agrarian society

Östlund, Lars and Öbom, Alexander and Löfdahl, Amanda and Rautio, Anna-Maria (2020). Women in forestry in the early twentieth century - new opportunities for young women to work and gain their freedom in a traditional agrarian society. Scandinavian Journal of Forest Research. 35 , 403-416
[Research article]

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Abstract

Logging and forestry have traditionally been seen as a purely masculine sphere. The aim of this study is to analyze women's introduction into and situations in the forestry sector in twentieth century northern Sweden. We interviewed 30 women who worked as cooks between the 1930s and the 1960s, and examined written sources. We found that driving forces behind the emergence of a system involving forestry cooks included state investigations, rationalization of the forest sector, the effects of WW2, and overall modernization of society. Our informants were unmarried and young when they started working, and their introductions to the job were characterized by encouragement and pressure in their surroundings. They had prior knowledge of cooking, but few underwent formal training. They were, in most cases, hired by the forest workers, and portray the camps as egalitarian social systems. It is clear that the Swedish system was rather unusual internationally, and these women had a definite impact on modernizing a workspace far from cities and industries. For the women, the job entailed hardships, but also a sense of freedom. Conceivably, a seed of women's liberation in twentieth century Sweden was planted by these thousands of young women working in the northern forests.

Authors/Creators:Östlund, Lars and Öbom, Alexander and Löfdahl, Amanda and Rautio, Anna-Maria
Title:Women in forestry in the early twentieth century - new opportunities for young women to work and gain their freedom in a traditional agrarian society
Series Name/Journal:Scandinavian Journal of Forest Research
Year of publishing :2020
Volume:35
Page range:403-416
Number of Pages:14
Publisher:TAYLOR AND FRANCIS AS
ISSN:0282-7581
Language:English
Publication Type:Research article
Article category:Scientific peer reviewed
Version:Published version
Copyright:Creative Commons: Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0
Full Text Status:Public
Subjects:(A) Swedish standard research categories 2011 > 4 Agricultural Sciences > 401 Agricultural, Forestry and Fisheries > Forest Science
(A) Swedish standard research categories 2011 > 5 Social Sciences > 509 Other Social Sciences > Gender Studies
Keywords:Cooks, logging, forest history, gender, boreal forest
URN:NBN:urn:nbn:se:slu:epsilon-p-107836
Permanent URL:
http://urn.kb.se/resolve?urn=urn:nbn:se:slu:epsilon-p-107836
Additional ID:
Type of IDID
DOI10.1080/02827581.2020.1808054
Web of Science (WoS)000565419700001
ID Code:22130
Faculty:S - Faculty of Forest Sciences
Department:(S) > Dept. of Forest Ecology and Management
Deposited By: SLUpub Connector
Deposited On:05 Feb 2021 08:25
Metadata Last Modified:05 Feb 2021 08:31

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