ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Female Labour in the Unorganised Sector-The Brick Worker Revisited

The Brick Worker Revisited Leela Gulati Mitu Gulati Revisiting Jayamma, the brick worker, after 20 years raises interesting questions about the way competitive markets are supposed to work and the assumption of rationality in economic (and social) behaviour, WE'VE known Jayamma for over 20 years now. We first got to know her when one of us was studying the lives of poor women in the brick industry [Gulati 1980]. Many years after the first project, we were examining the problems of poor widows [Gulati and Gulati 1993], and went to speak with Jayamma again. This time we were collecting data for an empirical study, and hadn't intended to do any case studies. As we were writing our article, with its broad generalisations about the problems the widows, based on 30 to 60 minute interviews with dozens of them, it struck us that Jayamma's life story had a different insight to provide from these short interviews that focused on widowhood alone. An insight that indicated the problems of widowhood were often ones that stemmed from problems that arose much before widowhood.

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