عنوان مقاله [English]
So far, Iranian carpet studies have mainly focused on "economic" and "artistic" dimensions. The first one considers the carpet as a commercial commodity, while the latter has concentrated on the aesthetic forms of the carpet, such as the motifs, patterns, colors, threads, visual effects, symbols, signs, weaving techniques, etc. These two approaches pay attention to the distinctions of carpet designs in different regions of the country from economic and artistic aspects. Thus, in the conventional historiography of Iranian carpets, primarily "economic matter" and "aesthetic matter" have been at the center of attention.
In the mentioned studies, the social history of carpets has usually less paid attention to. One of these areas is related to the lives of carpet laborers in carpet workshops. Women and children can be considered the weakest worker layers in the hierarchy of carpet producers. They can be acknowledged among the main subalterns of the carpet production system. The subalterns whose daily life situation is not clear on the edge of the Iranian carpet production system.
The purpose of this article is to know some dimensions and characteristics of the inferiority of women and children in Qajar carpet weaving workshops. To pursue such a goal, the question was asked about the situation of carpet weaving women and children from the point of view of issues such as double work at home and in the workshop (for women). What were the age-sex ratios, working health conditions, and finally the amount of wages and working hours?
This study was done from the theoretical and methodological aspects according to the point of view of Edward Palmer Thompson and using the bottom-up approach to the history of Iranian carpets. For this purpose, the lived experience of carpet- weaving women and children, especially their position and role in the Iranian carpet production system, was examined from a social point of view.
The scope of the investigation was the Qajar period and the necessary data were collected from the travelogues of this period. Thus, the present study was conducted with a qualitative approach and historical method.
The results showed that carpet weaving by women and children was common in urban, rural, and nomadic homes in different regions, and the payment of wages to women and children in the domestic weaving sector was eliminated, because domestic work, including carpet weaving at home, is not considered a "job". became.
Regarding age and gender, most of the weavers were women or child girls. Of course, in some parts of the country, boys were also assigned to work as carpet weavers. However, the employment of women and children in the carpet weaving workshop outside the home has contributed to the family's livelihood.
Moreover, the present study showed that the weavers in the carpet weaving workshops suffered from physical injuries such as bone deformities due to the inappropriate conditions of the structure as well as the lack of health and hygiene conditions, and some diseases were common among the weavers. These injuries were caused by working very long hours for meager wages that did not support daily life.
In short, the results of the present investigation in all mentioned investigated areas indicate that women and children in the workshops were in inferior positions compared to men. Interestingly, the women of the upper classes were also involved in carpet weaving, but in any case, such activities were not included in the framework of paid work. In other words, the employment of women in carpet weaving was almost universal and, in this respect, there was not much difference between the women of the upper classes in the village and the nomads.