Picture of a black hole

Strathclyde Open Access research that creates ripples...

The Strathprints institutional repository is a digital archive of University of Strathclyde's Open Access research outputs. Strathprints provides access to thousands of research papers by University of Strathclyde researchers, including by Strathclyde physicists involved in observing gravitational waves and black hole mergers as part of the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO) - but also other internationally significant research from the Department of Physics. Discover why Strathclyde's physics research is making ripples...

Strathprints also exposes world leading research from the Faculties of Science, Engineering, Humanities & Social Sciences, and from the Strathclyde Business School.

Discover more...

Women's work, dirty work: the gynaecology nurse as 'other'

Bolton, S.C. (2005) Women's work, dirty work: the gynaecology nurse as 'other'. Gender, Work and Organization, 12 (2). pp. 169-186. ISSN 0968-6673

Full text not available in this repository. (Request a copy from the Strathclyde author)

Abstract

This article seeks to explore the world of the gynaecology nurse. This world defines the gendered experience of nursing; that is, women in a women's job carrying out 'women's work'. It is also a world that receives scant public recognition due to its association with the private domain of women's reproductive health. Many issues dealt with on a daily basis by gynaecology nurses are socially 'difficult': cancer, infertility, miscarriage and foetal abnormalities; or socially 'distasteful': termination of pregnancy, urinary incontinence, menstruation and sexually transmitted disease. The 'tainted' nature of gynaecology nursing gives it the social distinction of 'dirty work' but does not deter the gynaecology nurse from declaring her work as 'special', requiring distinctive knowledge and skills. Qualitative data collected from a group of gynaecology nurses in a North West National Health Service hospital displays how they actively celebrate their status as women carrying out 'dirty work'. Through the use of ceremonial work that continually re-affirms their 'womanly' qualities the gynaecology nurses establish themselves as 'different', as 'special', as the 'other'.