Isolated and dependent: women and children in high-rise social housing in post-war Glasgow

Abrams, L., Fleming, L., Hazley, B., Wright, V. and Kearns, A. (2018) Isolated and dependent: women and children in high-rise social housing in post-war Glasgow. Women's History Review, (doi:10.1080/09612025.2018.1472897) (Early Online Publication)

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Abstract

In 1971 Pearl Jephcott's Homes in High Flats, the culmination of her groundbreaking research into high rise living in Glasgow, revealed the problems faced by young mothers on the new high rise estates in the city. This article interrogates two connected factors, social isolation and economic dependence, which characterised the experience of many women who were rehoused to high flats in the postwar decades. Drawing on evidence collected by Jephcott's research in the form of qualitative questionnaires with high rise tenants as well as ethnographic observation and action research with residents, we argue that the experience of many women of managing everyday life in a high rise flat with young children was frustrating, often lonely and unsupported, at a time when the home was still conceptualised as central to women's lives. Jephcott asserted that high rise housing had socially negative consequences for women and children. We do not disagree but argue that in the particular context of the postwar settlement, women's financial and welfare dependence on top of their particular housing circumstances in high rise flats constrained their opportunities rather than producing contentment thereby demonstrating the value of revisiting social research data.

Item Type:Articles
Status:Early Online Publication
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Abrams, Professor Lynn and Fleming, Dr Linda and Kearns, Professor Ade and Wright, Dr Valerie and Hazley, Dr Barry
Authors: Abrams, L., Fleming, L., Hazley, B., Wright, V., and Kearns, A.
College/School:College of Arts > School of Humanities > History
College of Social Sciences > School of Social and Political Sciences > Economic and Social History
College of Social Sciences > School of Social and Political Sciences > Urban Studies
Journal Name:Women's History Review
Publisher:Taylor & Francis
ISSN:0961-2025
ISSN (Online):1747-583X
Published Online:20 May 2018
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2018 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor and Francis Group
First Published:First published in Women's History Review 2018
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the publisher copyright policy

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Project CodeAward NoProject NamePrincipal InvestigatorFunder's NameFunder RefLead Dept
625811Housing, Everyday Life and Wellbeing over the Long Term in Glasgow c.1950-1975Lynn AbramsLeverhulme Trust (LEVERHUL)RPG-2014-014HU - HISTORY