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Abstract

Over the course of industrialization, servants moved out of the household, the site of both economic production and family life, and into the workplace, a space infused with the ideology of free labor and freedom of contract. In the process, they became employees, no longer dependent on their master for care or subject to his control. Free labor ideology dictated that employees be independent, self-reliant, and responsible for their own persons, as well as capable of bargaining for themselves in a competitive marketplace.

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