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We examine how two sociological traditions account for the role of femininities in social domination. The masculinities tradition theorizes gender as an independent structure of domination; consequently, femininities that complement hegemonic masculinities are treated as passively compliant in the reproduction of gender. In contrast, Patricia Hill Collins views cultural ideals of hegemonic femininity as simultaneously raced, classed, and gendered.
Domestic employment requires unique physical proximity of bodies from different social classes, and often from different racial and ethnic backgrounds. Despite the physical closeness, different strategies are used to reproduce class hierarchies among people, resulting in embodied inequality.