Labour Studies Index

Updated: 2022-05-16

" Have You No Manhood In You?": Gender and Class in the Cape Breton Coal Towns, 1920-1926

Document type Article
Author Penfold, Steven
Journal Acadiensis
Volume 23
Date 1994
Pages 21-44


This study is an effort to integrate the analysis of gender dynamics and class conflict in the coalfields of Cape Breton in the 1920s. An "enlarged" view of strike activity is adopted in order to better integrate the actions of non-waged working-class women. ...Women's Labour Clubs constituted the most organized expression of women's commitment to class action, but women also played an important role in crowd actions, and the domestic labour of women itself constituted a hidden form of strike support. This study is concerned to map the discourses of gender, mainly as they relate to class and labour militancy in the working-class community, and in doing so to write women back into the well-established narrative of class conflict in the coalfields. --From author's introduction