Social reproduction as unregulated work

Siobhán McGrath, James Defilippis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


In this article, two cases of paid social reproductive labour performed in the home in New York City are examined: subsidized child care and paid domestic work. Particular attention is paid to the organization of the industries and the experiences of employees in those worksites. It is demonstrated that there continues to be a persistent and wilful exclusion of this work from regulation, as well as systematic violations of those regulations which do govern the work, constituting what the authors term 'unregulated work'. It should be noted that the workers paid by the government are not exempt from this finding, but fit very clearly into this larger pattern.This illustrates the problems which arise from the process of transforming domestic spaces, and communities more broadly, into spaces of wage labour in American cities. It further serves as a powerful re-assertion of the denial of the value of'women's work'.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)66-83
Number of pages18
JournalWork, Employment and Society
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 2009

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Accounting
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Economics and Econometrics
  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management


  • Child care
  • Domestic work
  • Labour relations
  • Social reproduction
  • Unregulated work
  • Women's work


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