4. Women’s oppression, autonomous women’s movement – Marijke Colle

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Further reading

Outline of the talk

The work of women

  • Characteristics of the female work force:
    • non paid domestic work
    • the wages of women
    • specific oppression and double exploitation
  • Reconstruction of the worker’s family
  • Role of the family and contradiction with the potential independence of women
  • Conclusions
    • the system makes use of the double working day of women
    • man benefit from this situation
    • women’s work and gender roles

Origins and growth of the women’s movement in the 19th century

  • Flora Tristan (1803-1844)
  • The First International
    • Louise Michel (1830-1905) and the Paris Commune (1871)
  • The Second International
    • Specific organisations of women
    • Clara Zetkin (1857-1933)
  • The Russian Revolution and Alexandra Kollontaï (1872-1952)

Strategic importance of an autonomous women’s movement

  • women’s rights in the 19th century
  • the new feminism after 1968
  • necessity of active participation of women in the struggles
  • specific or patriarchal oppression
  • autonomous movement and principles of self organisation
  • autonomous women’s movement and revolutionary or anticapitalist parties
  • autonomous women’s movement and our vision on socialism


  • understanding specific oppression
  • neoliberal globalisation and women
  • gender studies and other oppressions (racism, ethnic minorities,…)
  • the question of the LGBT movement
  • victory in the struggles and socialist feminism
  • new violent attacks on womens rights by religious and reactonary forces everywhere