ADAM SMITHS´ MOTHER
A performance lecture by
The Household Studio / Bonnie Fortune, Sophia-Maria Seitz-Rasmussen & Lise Skou
At: >Schutzraum< <<Politik>>>Ästhetik<<<Medien>>
Organized by Thealit – Frauen.Kultur.Labor
Bremen September 2013.
Adam Smiths’ Mother
–a performative lecture with handouts.
The Household Studio produce a performative lecture focused on gender and economy, titled: “Adam Smith’s Mother.”
Taking a perspective of feminist critique we return to the household of Adam Smith, as he is writing the foundational text on the study of contemporary economics, The Wealth of Nations. Smith’s writing took place in the safe space of his mother’s house-his domestic needs, cooking, cleaning, etc. were taken care of by her labour.
We are interested in returning to this theoretical oversight–the point where Smith neglected to account for the hidden economy of the household while developing his ideas on free market economies that continue to shape today’s economic theories.
We want to look at the hidden economies of the home (a perceived retreat and safe space) as non-capitalist sites and discuss how focusing on these hidden economies, might shape an understanding of a future beyond capitalism, or at least produce a more nuanced understanding of contemporary economics.
We are inspired by feminist critiques of economics: The End of Capitalism (As We Knew It) J.K. Gibson-Graham; Caliban and the Witch Silvia Fredirici, and Feminism Without Borders, Chandra Talpad Mohanty.
Our piece will consist of a 30-minute perfomative lecture with specially printed handouts. This will be followed by a discussion period with snacks.
The script is written in collaboration with a writer and staged in collaboration with dramaturg Gritt Uladall-Jessen
Lise Skou and Bonnie Fortune will present the lecture.
The Household is:
A Household is as a container for many projects;
A Household shapes the concept of a domestic economy;
A Household is the site of non-capitalist class process.
“The household, then, can be seen as involved not only in capitalist reproduction but also in the reproduction of non-capitalist class processes such as the independent class processes of self-employment and ”self-exploitation.”
The Household is a diverse group of practitioners focused on issues of gender and economics. We begin by questioning the binary conception of gender and feminized labour within Capitalism. We are interested in raising questions and creating discussions around domestic economies, feminized labour, care work, affective labour, global Capitalism, domestic work, and non-Capitalist sites, among other issues. Gender shapes economic history and practice, from early notions of currency associated with ”bride price” to contemporary characterizations of temporary job contracts as ”feminized labour” and affective labour requirements for even the most low paying jobs in the service industry.
Our project begins with seeking a way outside, beyond, and around Capitalistism. We seek to trouble the idea that Capitalism is an impenetrable hegemony by focusing our research and projects toward non-capitalist sites and alternatives to the dominant culture.