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Heidi I. Hartmann is a feminist economist who is founder and president of the Washington-based Institute for Women's Policy Research IWPR , a research organization created to conduct women-centered, public policy research.

She is an expert on the intersection of women, economics and public policy. She attended Swarthmore College , where she received a B. Hartmann then attended Yale University , where she received a M. D in the subject in Hartmann began her career in as a computer programmer and researcher for the city planning department of New Haven, Connecticut , from until After, she became an acting instructor at Yale University for one year.

She moved to New York City , where from to she was a visiting assistant professor of economics at the New School for Social Research. Hartmann then took her talents to Washington, D. Here she worked on many reports listed in the 'Publications' section below.

She began her career in as a computer programmer and researcher for the city planning department of New Haven, Connecticut, from until She moved to New York City, where from to she was a visiting assistant professor of economics at the New School for Social Research. Hartmann believes women's part in the economy is split in two halves: work for pay and family care. Women are increasingly getting out of the home and into the marketplace but at the same time are still taking on most of the workload at home.

In order to achieve equality for women, Hartmann argues that society needs to improve opportunities in the labor market and also make the ability of women and men to make work and home care more manageable. Hartmann argues women's employment progress has significantly increased over the past five decades. Women have entered occupations, that have historically been closed off to them and are able to contribute to their family income and the economy more than ever before.

According to a report by Women's Policy Research, [3] growth for women's occupations over the past seven years was strongest in professional and business services 42, jobs were gained by women. Social Security provides many advantages as well as disadvantages for women, according to Hartmann's studies.

It provides benefits to wives regardless of whether they have worked for pay or not, former wives who had at least a ten-year marriage and for widows. Social Security also is adaptive to inflation processes and does not discriminate against lower or higher earning women workers. Hartmann also makes note of disadvantages of the United States' current social security system that are particular to women.

Elderly women rely on Social Security for most of their income, because they have less access to other forms of income such as pensions and savings that men have more access too. Besides the recent cuts to benefits, years when women are caregiving are averaged as zeroes, which drag's down a woman's overall average income.

Additionally, there are no benefits to caregiving outside of marriage, whereas the married caregiver can received spousal benefits from Social Security. Hartmann advocates greatly for equal opportunity in the labor market.

In "Still A Man's Labor Market: The Long-Term Earnings Gap; Unnecessary Losses", Hartmann argues that the wage gap has a major influence on many aspects of family life—such as choices, poverty rates, single mother's ability to care for their children and older women's retirement rates. If women's wages were higher, Hartmann concludes that nearly all families with women earners would have a higher standard of living.

She attributes the lower average earnings of women not to their preferences for low wage work, but because of the degree of sex segregation.

Labor market discrimination leads to lower earnings for women, meaning women cannot pay for child care, which takes them away from their jobs to commit to their children, a commitment that in turn contributes to discrimination against them in the workplace.

According to a report, women of all racial and ethnic groups earn less than men of the same group, and also earn less than white men. Asian workers have the highest median weekly earnings—primarily because of higher rates of educational attainment for both males and females.

This concept, created by Hartmann, is grounded in her belief that equal pay for jobs of equal value. She emphasized a certain type of wage discrimination that arises when a firm is substantially segregated by sex and the two groups are not performing the same sort of tasks, but tasks that are of "comparable worth" to the employer Women, Work, and Wages 9.

She defines sex segregation in the workplace as the concentration of men and women in different jobs that are predominantly of a single sex. Hartmann works towards a goal of complete integration, with different proportions of men and women within every occupation identical to their representation in the labor force as a whole. She points out, however, that due to differences between men and women deeply rooted in certain cultures, this goal may take decades to reach.

Therefore, an appropriate policy goal would be to eliminate barriers in the way of women's full exercise of employment rights. According to Hartmann, patriarchy is defined as "controlling women's access to resources and their sexuality, which in turn, allows men to control women's labor power, both for the purpose of serving men in many personal and sexual ways and for the purpose of rearing children". Before capitalism, a patriarchal system was established in which men controlled the labor of women and children in the family, and that through this they learned the techniques of hierarchal control.

Today, Hartmann argues the labor market perpetuates this hierarchal control. Low wages keep women dependent on men, encouraging them to marry. Married women must perform domestic tasks for their husbands, and thus men benefit—both from earning higher wages and by not having to participate in domestic tasks.

The article argues that "the marriage of Marxism and feminism has been like that between husband and wife depicted in English common law; Marxism and feminism are one, and that one is Marxism Hartmann believes Marxism provides good analysis but is sex-blind. She says the way that radical feminists describe characteristics of men- competitive, rationalistic, dominating- are much like the characteristics of capitalistic society. Therefore, it is in a capitalist society that it makes sense for people to look down on women as emotional or irrational—looking at them as "dependent".

Because of this, a feminism analysis is also necessary to describe the relations between men and women. She says that society must use the strengths of both Marxism and feminism to judge capitalism and acknowledge the present situation of women in it.

Women face a double-bind in many aspects of society, but in particular the economy. A woman is expected to work and provide for her family, while also making sure everything is taken care of in the home.

In "Contemporary Marxist Theory and Practice: A Feminist Critique", Hartmann along with Ann Markusen argue that in order to overcome the issues feminist economists are working to correct wage gap, discrimination in the workplace, and social security , the relation of women's reproductive processes to economic production need to be emphasized along with their importance to being a part of the actual work force.

In order to progress in the area of housework, the family needs to be understood not just as a unit of common ancestry but also as a location where conflicts regarding production and redistribution are sorted out.

Conflicts of production deal with how housework is distributed, the standards for this, and who will work for wages outside the home. Conflicts of redistribution deal with how the money should be spent and who will decide this. Hartmann has won various awards. In , she won the MacArthur Fellowship Award —a five-year grant from the MacArthur Foundation give to individuals who show exceptional creativity for their research and the prospect for more in the future—for her work on women and economics.

She is also the recipient of two honorary degrees. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Thesis Capitalism and women's work in the home, Main article: Institute for Women's Policy Research. Capitalism and women's work in the home, Ph. D thesis. Yale University. Distinguished Women Economists. Westport, CT: Greenwood, Taylor and Francis. Retrieved June 3, Publication no. Washington, D. Institute for Women's Policy Research.

Spring Capital and Class. July Review of Radical Political Economics. Love, Barbara J. Feminists Who Changed America, — University of Illinois Press. Namespaces Article Talk. Views Read Edit View history. Contribute Help Community portal Recent changes Upload file. In other projects Wikimedia Commons.

By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. Hartmann in Feminist economics. Yale University Ph. Swarthmore College A. MacArthur Fellowship


The Unhappy Marriage of Marxism and Feminism: Towards a more Progressive Union

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The Unhappy Marriage of Marxism and Feminism: Towards a More Progressive Union

Class and sex oppression are intertwined and interdependent, and therefore the liberation of women and the emancipation of the working class must take place hand in hand. Women were married for their wealth if they were from the upper classes or for their reproductive and domestic services if they were from the working classes they were therefore also treated as a form of private property in that they were subject entirely to the sexual and social control of their husbands. The early socialists argued that the emancipation of women was crucial to the freedom of humanity and that women could never truly be liberated without an end to private property. Engels looked to the development of human civilisation from the earliest societies, and argued that women became the subordinate sex with the emergence of private property, inheritance traditions and the division of labour. Although the details of his analysis have been criticised in light of later research, his approach, in which he discussed the position of women in terms of the changing material conditions that determined it, not just in terms of abstract rights and wrongs, was crucial to future socialist-feminist analysis.


Heidi Hartmann




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