The Introduction summarizes the content of the book, and sets out the background labour market situation. Drawing on census figures and examples of local and regional employment patterns, it charts the changes across the twentieth century for the employment of domestic workers. The methodology of the book is outlined, with particular attention to cultural history, oral history, and the history of emotions. The British context is contrasted with comparable trends in other countries, and the work of migrants in domestic service is discussed. Male servants are discussed, and the challenges of the source material are explored.
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