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The embodiment of agricultural machine work of young Swiss farm manageresses


  • Ruth Rossier

    (Forschungsanstalt Agroscope Reckenholz-Tänikon ART)

  • Rachel Picard

    (Forschungsanstalt Agroscope Reckenholz-Tänikon ART)


This article focuses on the embodiment of agricultural machine work and the construction of gendered identity in young Swiss farm manageresses. Our data is based on two focus groups of women who run their own farms. Unlike farming women, these women are meant to operate machinery in one way or another. Hence, the incorporation of machinery and the construction of their gendered identity may involve different features than for farm women. Our research is based on Brandth’s (2006) concept of gendered embodiment of agricultural work for farm women in Nor-way. The analysis shows, however, that young farm manageresses also negotiate their gendered identity differently when dealing with machines. All four processes described by Brandth for farm wom-en were also identified for farm manageresses. Agricultural train-ing is crucial in the construction of gendered identities and the embodiment of machinery. Women who are skilled in operating machinery ignore their femininity and reproduce hegemonic mas-culine concepts associated with machines. The embodiment of machinery then forms part of their professional and feminine iden-tity.

Suggested Citation

  • Ruth Rossier & Rachel Picard, 2010. "The embodiment of agricultural machine work of young Swiss farm manageresses," Journal of Socio-Economics in Agriculture (Until 2015: Yearbook of Socioeconomics in Agriculture), Swiss Society for Agricultural Economics and Rural Sociology, vol. 3(1), pages 311-328.
  • Handle: RePEc:cha:ysa001:v:3:y:2010:i:1:p:311-328

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    Cited by:

    1. Lia Bryant & Bridget Garnham, 2014. "The Embodiment of Women in Wine: Gender Inequality and Gendered Inscriptions of the Working Body in a Corporate Wine Organization," Gender, Work and Organization, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 21(5), pages 411-426, September.

    More about this item


    agriculture; gender; embodiment; identity; education;

    JEL classification:

    • D1 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior
    • D19 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Other


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