University of Calgary
UofC Navigation

Feminism at Work: Women Labour Activists in Western Canada, 1970-1990

Date & Time:
March 21, 2018 | 3:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Biological Sciences 561
Julia Smith is a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of History at Rutgers University and a Visiting Fellow in the Calgary Institute for the Humanities. Her research examines the history
and politics of women’s labour activism in Canada. She has published articles on feminist union organizing, labour relations in the child care sector, and the work experiences and labour militancy of flight attendants.
March for the Service, Office and Retail Workers' Union of Canada

Although the term “women’s movement” is often used to describe feminist activity, in reality distinct differences exist between the people and groups who engage in feminist activism. This talk will examine the feminist unions and labour organizations that women in Western Canada established in the 1970s and 1980s to address gender inequality at work and in society. These groups represented a range of political perspectives and used different tools and strategies to achieve their aims. Nevertheless, they had a common goal of eliminating sex-based disadvantages and a shared belief that women needed to use their power as workers to address the inequality they faced as women. Together, they made significant contributions to struggles to reduce gender inequality at work, in the labour movement, and in Canadian society.

Connect with us