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Women are responsible for the vast majority of childcare in contemporary Britain. Describe the effects that this has on their use of space and suggest ways in which any negative ideas could be ameliorated.

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Introduction

Women are responsible for the vast majority of childcare in contemporary Britain. Describe the effects that this has on their use of space and suggest ways in which any negative ideas could be ameliorated. By Katie Clarke Women are responsible for childcare for a variety of reasons. Often due to the costs of private childcare, a mother staying at home becomes logical. Many women struggle to find convenient well paid jobs so conclude that it is not worth working. Another reason why the woman is often responsible may be that the family see it as only natural that the woman in the family should take care of the children. "Women are perceived as having the sort of emotional qualities necessary to nurture families and run the home" (Valentine, 2001, pg 65). Also, maternal instincts are often assumed to grant women with greater ability than men when it comes to childcare. "Eco-feminists... see child-raring as a key experience that teaches women to be more caring and tender" (Rose, 1996, pg. ...read more.

Middle

(Gregson et al., 1997, pg 69) In society, we are surrounded by labels. A mother, for example, has the labels such as, mother, wife, daughter, sister, friend, aunt, customer, co worker, to name just a few. As we conform to what is expected of us from each of these labels our use of space can alter dramatically. A mother thinks about what is best for her child. Certain places will automatically become off limits for her as she puts the needs of her child first. For example one place the mother would not go includes smoky public houses. "The employment possibilities, the kinds of unpaid activities undertaken and the daily activities of young women... [With children] are defined within the 'social constraints' imposed by the ideology of gender roles" (Gregson et al., 1997, pg 69) In order to confirm that a woman's use of space is altered by childcare, mind maps can be produced and analyzed. This technique can show how well a person does or does not know an area. ...read more.

Conclusion

This was in hope of regaining, "The sanctity of family life". (Valentine, 2001, pg 66). The designers and governments wanted to encourage this style of housing following the war because, "They were concerned about falling birth rates and argued that improved housing would persuade more women to have children and remove the temptation of outside work". (Valentine, 2001, pg 66). As history tells, it did not work out this way. Women have fought their way to better maternity rights so that child bearing does not mean they do not pursue a career or outside interests. Despite this, the nuclear house is still popular on the market with a rise of single apartments. Gregson et al., 'Gender in Feminist Geography' in, Feminist Geographies: Explorations in Diversity and Difference. Holloway, L. and Hubbard P., 2001 People and Place the Extraordinary Geographies of Everyday Life, Prentice Hall, London. McDowell, L., 1999, Gender, Identity and Place; Understanding feminist geographies, Polity Press, Cambridge. Rose, G, 1996, Feminism and Geography, the Limits of Geographical Knowledge, Polity Press, Cambridge. Spring Rice, 1999, cited in, McDowell, L., Gender, Identity and Place; Understanding feminist geographies, Polity Press, Cambridge. Valentine, G., 2001, Social Geographies, Space and Society, Prentice Hall, Essex. ...read more.

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