Lancaster EPrints

Domestic labour and health: bringing it all back home.

Thomas, Carol (1995) Domestic labour and health: bringing it all back home. Sociology of Health and Illness, 17 (2). pp. 328-352. ISSN 0141-9889

Full text not available from this repository.

Abstract

This paper explores the relationship between unpaid domestic labour and health. Although the 'informal care' literature touches on the connection between aspects of domestic labour and health, sociologists have not engaged in a systematic analysis of the nature of this relationship. In the following discussion I examine i) the reasons why this relationship has been obscured, ii) possible ways forward in theorising the link and, iii) the under-recognised historical contribution made by domestic labourers to the improvement in the health status of the population in industrial Britain. In relation to the latter I critically examine the widely accepted 'McKeown thesis' (McKeown 1979) which postulates that falling mortality rates in late 19th and early 20th century Britain can be explained not by medical intervention but by rising standards of living and improved nutrition. I argue that in the McKeown thesis, and in the work of those like David Blane (1987) who have examined it, the explanation for falling mortality rates is incomplete because it has not accounted for a then developing and expanding area of social activity, namely, domestic labour.

Item Type: Article
Journal or Publication Title: Sociology of Health and Illness
Subjects: R Medicine > R Medicine (General)
Departments: Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences > Applied Social Science
Faculty of Health and Medicine > Health Research
ID Code: 33101
Deposited By: Mrs Yaling Zhang
Deposited On: 28 Apr 2010 14:35
Refereed?: Yes
Published?: Published
Last Modified: 27 Feb 2014 16:36
Identification Number:
URI: http://eprints.lancs.ac.uk/id/eprint/33101

Actions (login required)

View Item