Women and class-Epub Version

Women and class-Epub Version

The short text has been at the centre of dispute and analysis in the working class, labour and socialist movement for three decades.

Over four editions and constant re-printings it has informed the debates in the trade union movement, animated discussions in academic circles, been fiercely contested and defended in the women's movement and has educated successive waves of young communists, socialists and trade unionists.

Mary Davis brings to these renewed debates a marxist analysis of the role of women in class society, provides a sharply polemical introduction to competing conceptions of feminist theory and dissects the ways in which women's work in class society is experienced as both oppression and exploitation.

In a newly revised section she provides a firm repudiation of new forms of idealist thinking about sex, gender and identity that constitute a barrier to practical action and materialist thought


Mary Davis FRSA is visiting professor of Labour History at Royal Holloway University of London. She has written, broadcast and lectured widely on women’s history, labour history, imperialism and racism. She is a former member of the University and College Union national executive and the TUC women’s committee She is a founder member of the Sylvia Pankhurst Memorial Committee and chairs the Charter for Women. She was awarded the TUC women’s Gold Badge in 2010 for services to trade unionism. She is also a former member of the Communist Party’s executive committee and the party's national women’s organiser. Her books include Comrade or Brother? A History of the British Labour Movement 1789-1951 (1993), Sylvia Pankhurst: A Life in Radical Politics (1999) and Fashioning a New World: A History of the Woodcraft Folk (2000).

Previous editions of Women and Class were published by the Communist Party in 1990 and 1999. This edition is published by Manifesto Press in co- operation with the Communist Party.