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Populärkulturen och klassamhället. Arbete, klass och genus i svensk dampress i början av 1900-talet.

Holgersson, Ulrika LU (2005)
Abstract (Swedish)
Popular Abstract in Swedish

Huvudsyftet med min avhandling är att visa hur klass konstruerades språkligt i Svensk Damtidning i början av 1900-talet. Teoretiskt efterlyser jag en förnyelse av studier av klass, och skriver därmed in mig i de post-marxistiska och feministiska traditionerna. Ett viktigt mål på vägen är också att klarlägga dampressens status som historisk källa, inte minst genom en analys av aktiva journalister och arbetet på en damtidningsredaktion.



Forskningen om språk och klass har varit starkt modernistiskt färgad och framhäver ofta att man under 1800-talet alltmer kom att tala om "klass" istället för "klasser", under det att andra "äldre" modeller för sociala kategoriseringar blev mer... (More)
Popular Abstract in Swedish

Huvudsyftet med min avhandling är att visa hur klass konstruerades språkligt i Svensk Damtidning i början av 1900-talet. Teoretiskt efterlyser jag en förnyelse av studier av klass, och skriver därmed in mig i de post-marxistiska och feministiska traditionerna. Ett viktigt mål på vägen är också att klarlägga dampressens status som historisk källa, inte minst genom en analys av aktiva journalister och arbetet på en damtidningsredaktion.



Forskningen om språk och klass har varit starkt modernistiskt färgad och framhäver ofta att man under 1800-talet alltmer kom att tala om "klass" istället för "klasser", under det att andra "äldre" modeller för sociala kategoriseringar blev mer sällsynta. I Svensk Damtidning var det emellertid vanligt att tala om "klasser" i plural, och med andra bestämningar än just "arbetare-" och "borgare-", liksom att använda en hel rad av andra motsvarande termer för att beskriva en "social karta". Vidare kunde också tjänarinnor, skådespelerskor, sångerskor och andra yrkeskvinnor beskrivas som specifika klasser. Inte minst användes begreppet i den vidare betydelse som låg nära dess etymologiska ursprung (jfr framväxten av klassificeringen som en vetenskaplig metod). Fortsättningsvis har man inom forskningen om representationer av "arbetarklassen" ofta poängterat att denna definierades som "den andra". Genom att göra en diskursanalys av begreppen "arbete", "bildning" och "moderskap"/"sedlighet", visar jag emellertid hur man uppmärksammade sådant som man betraktade som attraktiva kvaliteter hos "arbetarkvinnor" eller "fattiga" kvinnor, men som man ansåg saknades bland många av dem som bedömdes som "bättre" eller "bildade". Dessutom användes i Svensk Damtidning också ett sådant ord som "arbeterska" inte bara för att skilja kroppsarbetande från sysslolösa kvinnor; termen fick även beskriva "bildade" människor genom att referera till dem som "tanke-arbetare", en attityd som stammade från Luthers lära om kallelsen. I det avslutande avsnittet undersöker jag så motståndet mot den dominerande diskursen. Här tolkar jag tidningens konstruktioner av fabriksarbeterskor, sömmerskor och tjänarinnor i relation till insändare signerade av samma kategorier av kvinnor.



Till sist drar jag slutsatsen att det är fruktbart att överge den stora berättelsen om "arbetarklassens" uppgång och förmodade fall, inte minst för att denna tankefigur var långt ifrån allenarådande ens i sina egna glansdagar. Med en fördjupad kunskap om klassbegreppets genealogi, vill jag således argumentera för att klass fortfarande är relevant i begreppets bredaste historiska bemärkelse: som en bestämning med rötter långt tillbaka i 1700-talet. (Less)
Abstract
The aim of my thesis is to demonstrate how class was constructed linguistically in Svensk Damtidning (Swedish Woman's Magazine) at the beginning of the 20th century. Theoretically, I call for a renewal of studies of class, thus joining the traditions of post-marxism and feminism.



Research into language and class, strongly coloured by modernism, suggests that from the 19th century onwards people increasingly spoke of "class" instead of "classes", while other "older" models of social categorisation became increasingly rare. However, in Svensk Damtidning it was common to write of "classes" in the plural, and with more designations than just "working-" and "bourgeois-/middle-" (as in working-class), as well as to use a range... (More)
The aim of my thesis is to demonstrate how class was constructed linguistically in Svensk Damtidning (Swedish Woman's Magazine) at the beginning of the 20th century. Theoretically, I call for a renewal of studies of class, thus joining the traditions of post-marxism and feminism.



Research into language and class, strongly coloured by modernism, suggests that from the 19th century onwards people increasingly spoke of "class" instead of "classes", while other "older" models of social categorisation became increasingly rare. However, in Svensk Damtidning it was common to write of "classes" in the plural, and with more designations than just "working-" and "bourgeois-/middle-" (as in working-class), as well as to use a range of equivalent terms to denote a "social map". In addition, servants, actresses, singers, and other professional women, were equally likely to be depicted as specific classes. On the whole the term was used repeatedly in a wider and more general sense close to its etymological origins.



Further, in research of representations of "the working-class", often great weight is placed on its definition as "the other". However, I demonstrate how discourses drew attention to qualities in "working", "uneducated" or "poor" women that were perceived as attractive, and were presumedly lacking in many "better" women. Moreover, Svensk Damtidning used a word such as "arbeterska" (female worker) not only to differentiate those with manual work from the idle rich, but to describe "educated" people, referring to them as "brain-workers", an attitude that stemmed from Luther's idea of human calling.



The final section attempts to examine the opposition to the dominant discourses. Here, I interpret how the journal construed female factory workers, seamstresses, and female domestic servants in relation to letters to the editor signed by the same categories of women.



By way of conclusion I argue that it is fruitful to abandon the great narrative of the working-class's rise and probable fall, not the least because this figure of speech was far from alone in its own presumed heyday. Thus, with a greater knowledge of its genealogy, I claim that in its broadest historical sense the term "class" is still relevant: as a designation with origin far back in the 18th century. (Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
supervisor
opponent
  • Prof. Olsson, Tom, Södertörns högskola
organization
alternative title
Popular Culture and Classification: the Discourses of Work, Class, and Gender in Swedish Women's Magazines at the Beginning of the Twentieth Century
publishing date
type
Thesis
publication status
published
subject
keywords
Contemporary history (circa 1800 to 1914), Historia, History, Genusvetenskap, Gender studies, identity, experience, labour history, post-modernism, post-marxism, feminism, women´s magazines, popular culture, work, gender, working-class women, class, classification, Modern historia (ca. 1800-1914), Scandinavian languages and literature, Nordiska språk (språk och litteratur)
pages
416 pages
publisher
Carlsson Bokförlag
defense location
Sal 3, Historiska insitutionen, Magle stora kyrkogata 12 A, Lund
defense date
2005-12-17 10:15
ISBN
91-7203-745-8
language
Swedish
LU publication?
yes
id
40eb7afa-196c-469c-937f-a9c0308309d2 (old id 24737)
date added to LUP
2007-06-01 09:12:43
date last changed
2016-09-19 08:45:01
@phdthesis{40eb7afa-196c-469c-937f-a9c0308309d2,
  abstract     = {The aim of my thesis is to demonstrate how class was constructed linguistically in Svensk Damtidning (Swedish Woman's Magazine) at the beginning of the 20th century. Theoretically, I call for a renewal of studies of class, thus joining the traditions of post-marxism and feminism.<br/><br>
<br/><br>
Research into language and class, strongly coloured by modernism, suggests that from the 19th century onwards people increasingly spoke of "class" instead of "classes", while other "older" models of social categorisation became increasingly rare. However, in Svensk Damtidning it was common to write of "classes" in the plural, and with more designations than just "working-" and "bourgeois-/middle-" (as in working-class), as well as to use a range of equivalent terms to denote a "social map". In addition, servants, actresses, singers, and other professional women, were equally likely to be depicted as specific classes. On the whole the term was used repeatedly in a wider and more general sense close to its etymological origins.<br/><br>
<br/><br>
Further, in research of representations of "the working-class", often great weight is placed on its definition as "the other". However, I demonstrate how discourses drew attention to qualities in "working", "uneducated" or "poor" women that were perceived as attractive, and were presumedly lacking in many "better" women. Moreover, Svensk Damtidning used a word such as "arbeterska" (female worker) not only to differentiate those with manual work from the idle rich, but to describe "educated" people, referring to them as "brain-workers", an attitude that stemmed from Luther's idea of human calling.<br/><br>
<br/><br>
The final section attempts to examine the opposition to the dominant discourses. Here, I interpret how the journal construed female factory workers, seamstresses, and female domestic servants in relation to letters to the editor signed by the same categories of women.<br/><br>
<br/><br>
By way of conclusion I argue that it is fruitful to abandon the great narrative of the working-class's rise and probable fall, not the least because this figure of speech was far from alone in its own presumed heyday. Thus, with a greater knowledge of its genealogy, I claim that in its broadest historical sense the term "class" is still relevant: as a designation with origin far back in the 18th century.},
  author       = {Holgersson, Ulrika},
  isbn         = {91-7203-745-8},
  keyword      = {Contemporary history (circa 1800 to 1914),Historia,History,Genusvetenskap,Gender studies,identity,experience,labour history,post-modernism,post-marxism,feminism,women´s magazines,popular culture,work,gender,working-class women,class,classification,Modern historia (ca. 1800-1914),Scandinavian languages and literature,Nordiska språk (språk och litteratur)},
  language     = {swe},
  pages        = {416},
  publisher    = {Carlsson Bokförlag},
  school       = {Lund University},
  title        = {Populärkulturen och klassamhället. Arbete, klass och genus i svensk dampress i början av 1900-talet.},
  year         = {2005},
}