When nationality matters: Women´s Labour in Domestic Work and Escorting Services
Sociology University of Burgos Burgos, Spain
The ongoing process of globalization encompasses a complex set of developments in the sociocultural, economic and political fields which have a "global" dimension in so far as they affect almost any social group. Yet, the ways in which these processes (e.g. transnational migration and the constitution of supranational institutions and organizations such as the EU and the WTO) affect and are affected by local and regional conditions are, indeed, very different. We can ask, thus, what is the role of specific constructions of nationhood and of national identity in the local unfolding of these global social, economic and political processes.
By examining classified advertisements in national and local Spanish press (El País and Diario de Burgos) for a period of ten years (1998-2008), and conducting telephone interviews with selected advertisers among those who explicitly indicate sex and nationality of the worker, in this paper I will analyze how and to what extent access to the Spanish labour market is articulated by specific constructions of gender and national identity. The paper is structured in three parts. In the first part, I will look at the sector of production and at the instances in which sex and nationality of the worker who searches and/or is searched for a job are been made explicit: How and to what extent is access to certain sectors of production and to certain kinds of jobs articulated by specific constructions of gender and nationality? In the second part, I will look more closely to those classifieds offering and/or demanding women to work in domestic care and personal (escorting) services: How and to what extent do specific constructions of a gendered national identity may contribute to a further labour segmentation and exclusion of immigrant women from certain kinds of jobs? Finally, in the third part, I will analyze those classifieds which make explicit the gender and/or nationality of the worker from a spatio-temporal perspective: When and to what extent have specific constructions of gender and nationality become an issue in the national and local Spanish labour market?