Clothes iron

Sexual division of labour

Gender and social class

Gender stereotypes: public / domestic

The display cases before us contain basic tools for household chores such as ironing. Until the mid-1950s, irons were made of cast iron and heated on top of the cooker. Traditionally, women had been responsible for all the chores related to maintaining the house and looking after its inhabitants. However, not all of them did so in the same way: those who could afford to, took charge of coordinating the household employees in their service; others not only took care of the household chores in their own home, at the very least, but also often worked in the homes of others, those who were more fortunate and could hire them to do so.