Case Study : ' The Time ' Home Economics '

1488 Words6 Pages
Cloyce Hunter June 10,2015
FCSG 5200- Research Techniques
Case Study Assignment
North Carolina Central University
Dr. Eberhardt-Burke

The time "home economics" may call up stereotypical images of teenagers actively sewing and cooking in 1950s classrooms, descriptions that have led numerous people to view this field as fundamentally narrow, dull, and socially conservative. In the 1960s and 1970s, the women 's movement was often critical of home economics, seeing it as a discipline that worked to restrict girls and women to traditional domestic and maternal roles. More recently, however, researchers in the field of women 's history have remained
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Nevertheless, even the most traditional representations of home economics offered some women a path to careers as teachers and researchers.
Ellen Richards (1842-1911) was one of the major figures in the emergence of home economics as a profession. As a young woman who had grown up in modest circumstances in a small town in Massachusetts, she defied convention by leaving home to attend the newly founded Vassar College, from which she received a bachelor 's and later a master 's degree. She went on to be the first, and for many years the only, woman to earn a degree at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. After graduating, she taught at M.I.T. as an instructor of sanitary education. She was also active in public health and social reform efforts in the Boston area. Throughout her career, she emphasized the influence of environment on health and well-being.
Beginning in 1899, Richards, along with Melvil Dewey and other educators and activists, organized a series of annual gatherings that became known as the Lake Placid Conferences, because the first of these, and several of the later ones, was held at Lake Placid, New York. Out of these conferences, a movement took shape that slowly defined itself and began pursuing specific goals. At the first conference, participants agreed on the term "home economics," which was held to be sufficiently broad to cover a wide range of concerns, and they began energetic and successful efforts to promote the teaching of home
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