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When women first hit the workforce, writes Weigel, “the belief remained widespread they were working not to support themselves but only to supplement the earnings of fathers or husbands.” As such, “employers used this misconception as an excuse to pay women far less than they paid men.

In 1900, the average female worker earned less than half of what a man would earn in the same position.” If you’ve ever wondered how it developed that men were expected to treat their dates, that’s how.

to be courted in dating-21

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I was forced to carry off this girl, because I had no other means of courting her.

Sporting sense is from 1510s, originally of tennis. (early assemblies for justice were overseen by the sovereign personally). She was beginning to feel panicky; he was courting distress.

These women became known as “Shopgirls.” Donovan spent two summers working at a department store to research a book, and later reported she knew of “several marriages and heard of a great many more where the husband was far above the wife as measured by the economic scale.” Magazines began running articles such as, “How Shopgirls win Rich Husbands.” An in-house newsletter for Macy’s employees in New York even included a gossip column that tracked these courtships. ” In order to attract rich men, these Shopgirls were caught by the irony of needing to buy the expensive items they sold.

“Have you noticed a gentleman wearing spats stopping at Miss Holahan’s counter every day, leaving a spray of lily of the valley? In an odd way, this consumerism marked a form of progress.

“In an earlier era, a girl from humble origins could not hope to look like the wife or daughter of a millionaire,” Weigel writes.

“But a job in a department store or a laundry gave anyone opportunities to become well versed in the signs of wealth.” To that end Shopgirls studied their well-to-do female customers seeking to imitate their look, which led the business world to pounce on this new type of consumer who sought little but to impress.But around 1900, more and more women were starting to apply cosmetics.By 1912, the Baltimore Sun reported that even respectable society women ‘are seen on our streets and fashionable promenade with painted faces.’ ” To counter society’s negative association with painted faces, “the cosmetics industry invented a new term: makeup.According to “Labor of Love: The Invention of Dating” (Farrar, Straus and Giroux), a sprawling new history by Moira Weigel, the first female daters faced exactly that — mistaken, in their quest for love, for prostitutes.As with concepts like the “teenager” and “middle-class,” dating is an historically recent invention, spurred by an influx of women into the big cities seeking work around the turn of the 20th Century.“‘If I had to buy all my meals I’d never get along,’ a young woman living in a boardinghouse in Hell’s Kitchen told a social worker in 1915.” But as these women were courted in public, efforts were undertaken to curb what authorities viewed as a potential public menace.

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