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VEM ÄR EN BRANDMAN?: En kvalitativ studie om brandmäns syn på jämställdhet och jämställdhetsarbete.
Halmstad University, School of Social and Health Sciences (HOS).
2013 (Swedish)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

Gender equality and gender equality work is relevant for today's working life, and previously male-dominated occupations may be increasingly under pressure to become more equal. This paper aims to explore and understand how the firefighters at a station are experiencing gender and gender equality in rescue services.

Using theories of how sex is done, how a power perspective and a structural approach can show men's and women's different conditions in an organization, and theories that are more specific to gender and change management the firefighters talk about gender and gender equality are analyzed. Essay results were collected through interviews with seven firefighters and then analyzed and interpreted with the help of theories.

The analysis shows that there is a perception among the firefighters that men and women are biologically different and that required physical strength legitimizes the exclusion of women. Inequality is seen as something natural and by pursuing an active gender equality women are given unwarranted benefits. When physical strength becomes a legitimate reason for exclusion, the responsibility for gender inequality is put on women and that women don’t have what it takes.

There is also a resistance against gender equality analyzed in the paper, and it's stated opposition seems to be directed against the management's way of recruiting women. Respondents argue that management must reduce requirements for the employment of women, and therefore risk their and society's safety. Deeper analysis shows however, a perception that a woman can´t do the physical requirements and that women are not suitable as firefighters. The physical strength is not an individual characteristic that women can have, but it becomes part of the social performance of masculinity. It is not strength that firefighters are demanding but male firefighters, and resistance therefore appears to be directed against the representation of women in the profession that increases.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Keyword [en]
: Fire department, firefighters, gender equality, gender equality work, change management, power perspective.
Keyword [sv]
Räddningstjänst, brandmän, jämställdhet, jämställdhetsarbete, förändringsarbete, maktperspektiv
National Category
Social Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:hh:diva-23963OAI: diva2:663599
Subject / course
Work Science
Available from: 2013-12-04 Created: 2013-11-12 Last updated: 2013-12-04Bibliographically approved

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