Communication Studies, Department of


Date of this Version

Fall 2009


Published in Women's Studies in Communication Volume 32. Number 3. Fall 2009, pp. 320-347. Published by Organization for Research on Women and Communication (ORWAC),


An analysis of interviews with mining families reveals that gender identity construction is a collaborative process that draws upon broader community discourses. Male miners and non-mining women created a generalized other for women as "unfit to mine" (i.e., women are physically too weak to mine, are easy prey, and are ladies who do not belong in the mines). Female miners responded with gendered discourses that distanced themselves from and linked themselves to the generalized other.