highly skilled

They’re also seen as women’s work, which has always been devalued in the American labor market. The share of female lawyers, physicians, surgeons, servers, and housekeepers has also increased substantially. They are the most sought-after professionals; the highly skilled set in which accountants, surgeons, engineers, and lawyers fall under. New-Collar Worker – Individuals who develop technical and soft skills needed to work in the contemporary technology industry through nontraditional education paths.

White-collar workers typically wore white, button-down shirts and worked in office settings. Other aspects that distinguish blue-collar and white-collar workers include earnings and education level. The term was coined in 1983 to describe the limits women have in furthering their careers since the jobs are often dead-end, stressful and underpaid. The term pink ghetto is just simply another way of describing pink-collar work.


In the mid 19th and early 20th century women aimed to be treated as equals to their male counterparts, notably in the Seneca Falls Convention. In 1920 American women legally gained the right to vote, marking a turning point for the American women’s suffrage movement; yet race and class remained as impediments to voting for some women. For typically pink-collar work, picture classrooms, offices, and healthcare centers. The interesting thing is that in the 1940s, millions of women in the United States entered the workforce in jobs that were traditionally held by men.

Examples of pink-collar

Studies show that white-collar workers are less likely to face health disparities. Pink collar jobs refer to jobs that are predominantly held by women. You’re probably familiar with blue collar jobs, which typically involve manufacturing or manual labor, and white collar jobs, which typically involve clerical or managerial duties. Up until the beginning of the century, women had a hard time entering the workforce, and when they did, it was mostly by taking low-paid jobs that held little prestige.

Once women embrace STEM, there’s no going back to the old … – blogs.lse.ac.uk

Once women embrace STEM, there’s no going back to the old ….

Posted: Wed, 14 Oct 2020 07:00:00 GMT [source]

For the first time women were not completely dependent on themselves, in 1933 the federal government expanded in its responsibility to female workers. In 1938 the Fair Labor Standards Act grew out of several successful strikes. Two million women joined the workforce during the Great Depression despite negative public opinion. Although female employees did not receive equal pay, they did get sabbaticals to attend university and to travel for their professions at the cost of the AGS. Those women working managerial and library or museums positions made an impact on women in the work force, but still encountered discrimination when they tried to advance. Women scientists found it hard to gain appointments at universities.

In the 1860s and 1870s, widespread use of the typewriter made women appear better suited for clerk positions. With their smaller fingers, women were perceived to be better able to operate the new machines. By 1885, new methods of note-taking and the expanding scope of businesses led office-clerk positions to be in high demand. Having a secretary became a status symbol, and these new types of positions were relatively well paid. Western women began to develop more opportunities when they moved into the paid workplace, formerly of the male domain.

Pink-collar worker

Often we see the side of the argument that says that men are too stubbornly comfortable in Car 1 to leave it without at the same time seeing there are many ways Car 2 is not yet made comfortable for men. It’s no surprise, then, that Donald J. Trump appealed to men who feel this way — not just his promises to bring back factory jobs, but also his machismo. “White working-class men’s wages have plummeted, and what happens to men in that context is anxieties about whether they’re ‘real men,’ ” she said. Mr. Dawson used to earn $18 an hour making railroad traction motors.

Teachers, Nurses, and Child-Care Workers Have Had Enough – The Atlantic

Teachers, Nurses, and Child-Care Workers Have Had Enough.

Posted: Tue, 27 Sep 2022 07:00:00 GMT [source]

That has changed, and now men and women both hold this position, and the sexism is starting to fade away. It’s a job that women tend to hold, but men are also often found in this pink-collar job. It’s a great example of a job where the public is served, and people grow through direct interaction. Let’s first start with raising awareness by sharing articles such as this. It can be a tough sell, however, and will require some imaginative solutions to truly balance roles. For one thing, we are fighting a situation that has become ingrained over a long period of time.

Pink ghetto was more commonly used in the early years, when women were finally able to work. Pink-collar work became the popular term once it was popularized by Louise Kapp Howe, a writer and social critic, in the 1970s. Pink-collar jobs generally take place in the service industry and care-oriented career fields. That’s because when women began to enter the workforce in the 1940s, these were the types of careers they were able to obtain. Rather than dealing with the pink car, the focus remains on the blue one.

Why Men Don’t Want the Jobs Done Mostly by Women

Dating allowed men and women to practice the paired activities that would later become a way of life. This graph shows the increase in women graduating high school and attending college, while there is a decrease in high school dropouts. Women’s work, and defining women to particular fields within the workplace, began to rise in the 1940s concurrently with World War II. Some women were delighted to go back to being housewives or to their old jobs. Others had a taste of the satisfaction of working, doing a skilled trade, and earning a decent living, and they weren’t happy.

Many pink-collar jobs, like paralegals and social workers, see smaller pay gaps or are even paid more than men for the same job. However, many of these industries still prefer men in their leadership positions, keeping women in lower-paying jobs. The modern definition of pink-collar workers has changed from jobs women held to jobs in the service industry and ones where you primarily deal with people.

Other traditionally pink collar jobs, like teachers, private household workers, and secretaries, haven’t changed much since 1940. A pink-collar worker is also a member of the working class who performs in the service industry. They work in positions such as waiters, retail clerks, salespersons, certain unlicensed assistive personnel, and many other positions involving relations with people. The term was coined in the late 1970s as a phrase to describe jobs that were typically held by women; now the meaning has changed to encompass all service jobs.

This can be changed however … change one’s skill set and one’s preferences may change also. Once empathy is mastered as a product of training and/or practice, career options expand both in preference and in opportunity. Just like mastering the skill of swimming may lead a person to become a lifeguard. If we trained empathy in men, for example, they might feel more inclined to seek more caregiving jobs.

How To Attract Men Into ‘Pink Collar’ Jobs – Forbes

How To Attract Men Into ‘Pink Collar’ Jobs.

Posted: Tue, 05 Apr 2022 07:00:00 GMT [source]

Women who work in non-traditional jobs usually earn more, perhaps because the competition with men requires them to hold themselves to a higher standard. Collar color is a set of terms denoting groups of working individuals based on the colors of their collars worn at work. These can commonly reflect one’s occupation within a broad class, or sometimes gender; at least in the late 20th and 21st century, these are generally metaphorical and not a description of typical present apparel. For the two terms of longest use, white-collar workers are named for the white-collared shirts that were fashionable among office workers in the early and mid-20th century. Blue-collar workers are referred to as such because in the early 20th century, they usually wore sturdy, inexpensive clothing that did not show dirt easily, such as blue denim or cambric shirts.

Many women had furthered their education deriving a sense of self-worth. Throughout the 20th century, women such as Emily Balch, Jane Addams, and Lillian Wald were advocates for evolving the roles of women in America. These women created settlement houses and launched missions in overcrowded squalid immigrant neighborhoods to offer social services to women and children. Another thing that began the shift of women’s roles in the workforce around the 1940s was the greater opportunities for education for women. Not every woman was able to get an education beyond high school, but it was becoming a more commonplace option. It’s interesting that not only have the jobs that were classified as a pink collar in the past changed.

t-century female working world (United Kingdom)

Why did some of these jobs become less available to women after the 1940s? Some people like the white-glove service that an agent offers and many businesses prefer to go through a travel agency. Social workers step in to protect children and support families in need. Most social workers have an undergraduate diploma and work in a government-run agency. These preferences are wrought from comfort – what has been made comfortable for women and what has been made comfortable for men over time.

According to the 2016 United States Census analyzed in Barnes, et al.’s research paper, more than 95% of the construction workforce is male. Due to the low population of women outside of the childcare or social workforce, state governments are miscalculating economic budgets by not accounting for most female pink-collar workers. Generally, less government funding is allocated to professions and work environments that traditionally employ and retain a greater percentage of women, for example, education and social work.

Other scholars, such as Kim Golombisky, acknowledge the inequalities of women, and especially certain minority groups and different classes, as part of the cause of this phenomenon. Mostly women were hired as librarians, who had been professionalized and feminized from the late 19th century. In 1920, women accounted for 88% of librarians in the United States. Kristin Kizer is an award-winning writer, television and documentary producer, and content specialist who has worked on a wide variety of written, broadcast, and electronic publications. A former writer/producer for The Discovery Channel, she is now a freelance writer and delighted to be sharing her talents and time with the wonderful Zippia audience. They used to be called stewardesses, and the sexism in this industry is legendary.

  • It’s a job both men and women have always held, but more often, in the past, the men were the store owners, and women were hired to help.
  • In the 1940s, clerical work expanded to occupy the largest number of women employees, this field diversified as it moved into commercial service.
  • Widowed or divorced women struggled to support themselves and their children.
  • It’s very difficult for organizations to have more female engineers or CEOs until they have more male administrative professionals.

The average worker in the 1940s was over 35 years old, married, and needed to work to keep their families afloat. These women came with credentials from well-known colleges and universities and many were overqualified for their positions, but later were promoted to more prestigious positions. This poster made in 1942 titled “We Can Do It!” captures the WWII era cultural icon Rosie the Riveter depicted by J. Howard Miller who created this poster as an inspirational image to boost female worker morale.

“I was a welder — that’s all I know how to do,” said Mr. Dawson, who is living on disability insurance because he has rheumatoid arthritis. In many lines of work, be they blue-collar, pink-collar, or white-collar, there is little sense that one is contributing to one’s community. Until recently secretarial work and nursing were very much pink-collar professions. For example, among all teachers, 70% are women, compared with 74% in 1940.

Car 2 lacks value, real and perceived, as a result of historically rewarding men in Car 1. Car 2 is painted pink and given the pejorative name – pink-collar jobs. The color and the word itself – pink – are synonymous with weak and of less value in our society. The notion is that people in white-collar jobs have higher pay grade, while blue-collared post runs by hourly wage.

Pink Collar Millennials: Recruiting the Best and Brightest Millennials in Healthcare, Education and Social Services

Most pink collar jobs followed this path because of the uncertainty of the post-war years. Suburban housewives were encouraged to have hobbies like bread making and sewing. The 1950s housewife was in conflict between being “just a housewife” because their upbringing taught them competition and achievement.


In the 1937 a woman’s average yearly salary was $525 compared to a man’s salary of $1,027. In the 1940s two-thirds of the women who were in the labor force suffered a decrease in earnings; the average weekly paychecks fell from $50 to $37. This gap in wage stayed consistent, as women in 1991 only earned seventy percent of what men earned regardless of their education. Men still gravitate to work in the fields, construction, and maintenance. Fewer than 18 percent of men cared to work with children or the elderly.

Women scientists were forced to take positions in high schools, state or women’s colleges, governmental agencies and alternative institutions such as libraries or museums. Women who took jobs at such places often did clerical duties and though some held professional positions, these boundaries were blurred. In addition, Military nurses, an already “feminized” and accepted profession for women, expanded during wartime. In 1917, Louisa Lee Schuyler opened the Bellevue Hospital School of Nursing, which was the first to train women as professional nurses.

  • According to International Women in Mining , the term “pink-collar” originated during World War II, when women entered the labor force to replace men fighting in the war.
  • The only area that I have not seen men in is in the area of nail technology.
  • “More men will go into care because they don’t have a choice, but they’re going to carve out spaces for themselves that feel less like women’s work,” she said.
  • Most of these jobs are performed in a clean environment, without exposure to dangers, and without requiring hard physical work.
  • Rather than dealing with the pink car, the focus remains on the blue one.

You’re not going to find it on the ten best paying jobs list, that’s for sure, but many men excel at knowing what looks good or best on a woman which is why they are getting into these positions. Some employees need to do manual labor; some handle tons of paperwork; others are assigned to do fieldwork; and then there are freelancers who are occasionally included in the payroll. It is a salaried professional, typically referring to general office workers and management.