European Labour History Network – Working Group on Feminist Labour History


The European Labour History Network (ELHN)

The founding meeting of the ELHN took place at the International Institute of Social History (IISH) on 12 October 2013. The forty scholars who gathered in Amsterdam, belonging to research institutions, archives and journals based in various European countries, felt the need to increase the cooperation among labour history scholars, share knowledge and (digital) material, create a platform for future collective research, and organize conferences and seminars. The Network will primarily include Europe-based scholars (professors, post-doc and PhD researchers, post-graduate students) but will also seek to connect with scholars based outside Europe.
It was agreed to circulate information through Labnet (, the Social History Portal ( and a virtual environment electronic dis-cussion platform (forthcoming); a meeting of the journals group in Vienna will be held during the ESSHC; a first broad conference will be organized, probably in 2015, in conjunction with another event in the field.
A provisional coordination committee was appointed, whose members are: Marcel van der Linden, Stefano Musso, Silke Neunsinger, Leda Papastefanaki, Tibor Valuch, Xavier Vigna, Donald Weber and Susan Zimmermann.
In order to structure the network and overcome fragmentation, the key-role of working groups was underlined. Some working groups were proposed and are now taking shape. Among others: Long term perspectives on remuneration; Pre-industrial Labour; Feminist Labour History; Industrial heritage and structural change; workers politics and social movements; Imperial labour history.

The ELHN Working Group on “Feminist Labour History”

The EHLN working group “Feminist Labour History” aims at creating and expanding existing, more or less formal and informal contacts and networks of scholars with an interest in gendered labour history in Europe and around the world. We would like to discuss research related to a broad range of themes and concepts in feminist labour history including but not limited to the following:
• the intersection of class, race, gender, global inequality, etc. in all thematic areas of labour history
• the global gendered division of labour
• the historical engendering of various types and forms of labour
• the historical evolvement of the relationship between paid and unpaid or subsistence-oriented work
• commodification and decommodification of domestic and care work
• the role gender has played in shaping labour law and practice of regulating labour and the impact of labour law and labour practices on gender and gender relations
• trade unions and gender locally, nationally and internationally
• the politics of “women’s work” and “men’s work”

We also aim at the exchange of knowledge about primary sources, archives, and literature related to the history of gender and labour.

Silke Neunsinger is co-ordinator research at the Labour movement archives and library in Stockholm and is currently involved in a research project together with Ykva Waldemarson on the global history of equal pay
Leda Papastefanaki has published on economic and social history, labour history and gender in Greece (19th-20th centuries) and is teaching courses on gender history, economic and social history at the University of Ioannina, Greece.
Susan Zimmermann is currently involved, as a co-editor together with Eileen Boris and Dorothea Hoechtker, in the publication project “Women’s ILO Transnational Networks, Global Labour Standards and Gender Equity, 1919 to Present,” accepted for publication in the ILO Century Series published by Palgrave.

Any further suggestions are more than welcome!

If you are interested in joining the Working Group on Feminist Labour History, please fill in the form below.



European Labour History Network – ELHN

Working Group on
“Feminist Labour History”


Name and Surname
Academic position (if any)
Personal webpage

Research interests (in general):

Research interests related to the topic:

How would you like to be involved in the Working Group on “Feminist Labour History”? Please, tick all relevant responses:

• Receive information
• Take part in seminars, conferences, and other events.
• Organize seminars, conferences, and other events.
• Organize and design collective projects
• Other:

Would you like to suggest any topic for future workshop or conferences?


Please, add any further comments and suggestions here.

Do you consent the circulation of these information within the working group members?

Do you consent the publication of these information, e.g. on the future website of the ELHN?

Please, return this questionnaire to: Leda Papastefanaki