Who counts? Nuns, work, and the Census of Canada

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MacDonald, Heidi
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University of Ottawa Press
Although women religious (commonly called nuns) have historically been a large group of mostly professional women, they were regularly excluded from what the Census of Canada defined as the work force. In the censuses from 1871 to 1991, the categories in which nuns were enumerated varied, resulting in impossible fluctuations in their numbers and under-reporting of their contributions to the work force. Nor are the statistics provided by the Roman Catholic Church reliable for estimating the number of nuns working in Canada in any given year. How nuns were reported in the census has had significant implications for the ways in which they have been portrayed or neglected by labour historians.
Permission to include this article granted by the editor of Histoire Sociale/Social History
Women religious , Nuns , Census of Canada, 1871-1991 , Nuns -- Canada -- History , Nun's work , Census classification of nuns , Women's work
MacDonald, H. (2010). Who counts? Nuns, work and the Census of Canada. Histoire Sociale/Social History, 86, 369-391.