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Mechanizing writing and photographing the word: Utopias, office work, and histories of gender and technology∗

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Published in History and Technology. 2001, vol. 17, no. 4, p. 319-352
Abstract This article deals with the history of the profession of shorthand typing and more generally, of the transformations which took place in offices from the end of the 19th century onwards, when the acceleration of writing production became a new economic imperative. A series of figures, projects, and practices are cited in order to analyze the conditions surrounding the emergence and the development of a profession as well as the reasons for, and consequences of its feminization in France. The joint development of a practice and a profession centered on the Remington typewriter and shorthand emerges as one outcome among other future or existing practices. Inventors, propagandists, manufacturers, amateurs, and professionals participated in this history, a history which shows how diverse the milieus involved in the mastery of specific techniques were, how relative the motives and criteria put forward to enhance and promote them were, and how different the meanings and values given to them could be.
Keywords TypistStenographerFeminizationMechanization
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GARDEY, Delphine. Mechanizing writing and photographing the word: Utopias, office work, and histories of gender and technology∗. In: History and Technology, 2001, vol. 17, n° 4, p. 319-352. https://archive-ouverte.unige.ch/unige:76307

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Deposited on : 2015-10-20

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