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From good to majordome. Control of bodies and gender relations in elite domesticity

Articles

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Disciplines
KeywordsTriple Keywords
Context (Linguistics)
Grammar, Comparative and general--Context
Situation (Linguistics)
Learning
Learning process
Political power
Empowerment (Social sciences)
Power (Social sciences)
Inhibition
Assimilation (Sociology)
Cultural assimilation
Acculturation
Development education
Culture contact
Representation
Political representation
Self-government
Representative government and representation
Parliamentary government
Experience
Coeducation
Novellas (Short novels)
Stories
Metafiction
Fiction
Novels
Fiction--Philosophy
Self (Philosophy)

Abstract

, which is different from other contemporary forms of domesticity, elitarian domesticity, serving particularly wealthy families, is a privileged place to study the effects of gender diversity in the context of social confrontation in permanent domestic work. It requires employees to be acculturated to the tastes, practices and lifestyles of the elites they serve and to learn a domestic ethos that mark their bodies and appearances. In the context of multiple and mixed domesticity, typical of ‘big houses’, this learning has disrupted, in particular, the interpersonal codes between men and women specific to employees in the popular classes and their relationship with the sexual division of labour. Elite domesticity reproduces but also reproduces employee representations of gender hierarchies and power relations. Focusing on the French case, this article asks how these employees incorporate and understand new self-presentation standards. They are tested as an inhibition of their males and females, which challenges their gender identities, but also their class and race identities, controlled by their employers and hierarchy to ensure effectiveness at work and social order.

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