Can Law Challenge the Public/Private Divide? Women, Work, and Family
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Susan B. Boyd
Discrimination, Islamophobia, Legal literacy
Journal article

Boyd, S. B. (1996). Can Law Challenge the Public/Private Divide? Women, Work, and Family. Windsor Yearbook of Access to Justice, 15, 161–185. Retrieved from,as%20a%20site%20of%20struggle

“This article addresses the key elements of the public/private divide which predominates in western societies such as Canada. In particular, its ideological effects in constructing gendered divisions between state regulation and family relations, and between work and family are traced. The history of the divide is outlined, with attention to its differential operation according to race, class, and other social relations of power. Efforts to shift the divide through law are traced and its intransigence is demonstrated by reference to socio-economic studies. Case studies of feminist efforts to shift the divide through litigation and through legislative reform are used to illustrate both the pervasiveness of the divide, and the tension between short term and long term strategies to deal with its consequences. It is conclude that although law alone cannot shift the embedded nature of the public/private divide, and extra-legal strategies are required, neither can law be abandoned as a site of struggle.”

The Teaching Against Islamophobia resources were developed with funding support from the Law Foundation of BC, and the Centre for Comparative Muslim Studies at SFU.


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