February 1, 2017 at 10:30 pm

Wealth & Poverty | A Home on the Range and a Range in the Home, Feb. 7

The Wealth & Poverty theme at Ohio University presents Dr. Katherine Jellison discussing “A Home on the Range and a Range in the Home: Farm Women’s Acquisition of Modern Household Technology” on Tuesday, Feb. 7, from 9-10 a.m. at Alden 319.

This event is part of Wealth & Poverty Week: Rural America.


In the 50-year period between World War I and the Vietnam War, a revolution took place in Midwestern agriculture. The energy of people and animals was replaced by machine power, diversity gave way to specialization, and capital investment became a substitute for labor intensity. These changes affected labor in the farm home as well as in the fields and barn. In her presentation, Jellison examines Midwestern farm women’s unexpected response to the new labor-saving devices that irrevocably changed the patterns of life and labor on the American family farm. Using the Midwestern plains states as a case study, she finds that women rejected the housewife-consumer role that agricultural extension agents and home appliance manufacturers promoted as the inevitable outcome of farm modernization. Instead, farm women used new household equipment to enhance rather than reject their traditional role as farm producers. In this way, they retained at least a modicum of economic power within the larger patriarchal system of modern family farming.


Speaker Bio

Jellison is Professor and Chair of History at Ohio University. Among her publications is the book Entitled to Power: Farm Women and Technology, 1913-1963 (University of North Carolina Press). She is currently president of the Agricultural History Society and co-chair of the Rural Women’s Studies Association. Her latest research focuses on Old Order Amish farm women during the Great Depression.

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More Rural America Events

Appalachia’s New Rural Economy: Industry, Employment, and Economic Well-Being

  • Friday, Feb. 3 – Cindy Anderson (Sociology and Anthropology) 1-2pm at Alden 319

Rising Tides and Leaky Boats: Economic Development Strategies That Work for Those That Need Help Most

A Home on the Range and a Range in the Home: Farm Women’s Acquisition of Modern Household Technology

Comprehensive Patient Navigator Program for Rural Appalachia

Growing Old in Rural Appalachia: Looking Back and Thinking Forward

  • Thursday, Feb. 9 – Dr. Graham Rowles (Gerontology, University of Kentucky), 3-4 p.m. at Alden 319

The Little Cities as a Classroom

  • Friday, Feb. 10 – Dr. Rachel Terman (Sociology and Anthropology) and John Winnenberg (Sunday Creek Associates) 1-2 p.m. at Alden


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