Downtown Ladies: Informal Commercial Importers, a Haitian Anthropologist and Self-Making in Jamaica [NOOK Book]

Overview

The Caribbean “market woman” is ingrained in the popular imagination as the archetype of black womanhood in countries throughout the region. Challenging this stereotype and other outdated images of black women, Downtown Ladies offers a more complex picture by documenting the history of independent international traders—known as informal commercial importers, or ICIs—who travel abroad to import and export a vast array of consumer goods sold in ...
See more details below
Downtown Ladies: Informal Commercial Importers, a Haitian Anthropologist and Self-Making in Jamaica

Available on NOOK devices and apps  
  • NOOK Devices
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 NOOK 7.0
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 NOOK 10.1
  • NOOK HD Tablet
  • NOOK HD+ Tablet
  • NOOK eReaders
  • NOOK Color
  • NOOK Tablet
  • Tablet/Phone
  • NOOK for Windows 8 Tablet
  • NOOK for iOS
  • NOOK for Android
  • NOOK Kids for iPad
  • PC/Mac
  • NOOK for Windows 8
  • NOOK for PC
  • NOOK for Mac
  • NOOK for Web

Want a NOOK? Explore Now

NOOK Book (eBook)
$15.99
BN.com price
(Save 44%)$29.00 List Price

Overview

The Caribbean “market woman” is ingrained in the popular imagination as the archetype of black womanhood in countries throughout the region. Challenging this stereotype and other outdated images of black women, Downtown Ladies offers a more complex picture by documenting the history of independent international traders—known as informal commercial importers, or ICIs—who travel abroad to import and export a vast array of consumer goods sold in the public markets of Kingston, Jamaica.

Both by-products of and participants in globalization, ICIs operate on multiple levels and, since their emergence in the 1970s, have made significant contributions to the regional, national, and global economies. Gina Ulysse carefully explores how ICIs, determined to be self-employed, struggle with government regulation and other social tensions to negotiate their autonomy. Informing this story of self-fashioning with reflections on her own experience as a young Haitian anthropologist, Ulysse combines the study of political economy with the study of individual and collective identity to reveal the uneven consequences of disrupting traditional class, color, and gender codes in individual societies and around the world.
Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute
An engaging and thoughtful ethnography of the symbolic and material meaning of globalization for female entrepreneurs. . . . Downtown Ladies will be of interest to anthropologists, sociologists, women and gender studies scholars and others studying women, work, and globalization. Ulysse's experimental ethnographic narrative style will be essential reading to any course on feminist theory, field methods, and ethnography that troubles the notion of the 'native anthropologist.'

— Heather A. Horst

Journal of Anthropological Research
An accessible and theoretically astute read for both undergraduates and graduate students. Because Ulysse consistently ties transformations in self-making to broader processes of change both locally (nationally) and globally, and because she interrogates consumption in relation to a political economy of racialization, the book should be of interest not only to Caribbeanists but also to those anthropologists more generally concerned with globalization and subjectivity.

— Deborah A. Thomas

Bulletin of Latin American Research
Graduate students and professionals alike will find [the book] extremely beneficial and inspiring for its competent tackling of some of the most challenging conundrums in contemporary gender theory, critical race theory and cultural anthropology.

— Diana Fox

Faye Harrison

“Gina Ulysse is the first anthropologist to zoom in on the far-ranging internationalization of Caribbean market women, and her analysis clearly and compellingly illuminates the historical depth, cultural intricacies, and political and economic stakes involved in their work and their self-making. There is no other synthesis and original research like this on socioeconomic agents who have emerged in response to historical shifts in Jamaica’s place within the global economy in the past thirty years.”
Mimi Sheller

“In this remarkable, sensitive, and gutsy ethnography of informal commercial importers in urban Jamaica, Haitian American anthropologist Gina Ulysse opens our eyes to the lives of enterprising women who draw on all their resourcefulness to make it in a hostile global economy, and in the process remake markets, their own identities, and the ethnographic relationship. Putting her own body on the line, Ulysse rethinks many of the key concepts and assumptions within the literature on gender, race, class, and space in the Caribbean and in the wider field of globalization studies. Along the way the book also dishes out a poignant cultural history of contemporary Jamaican urban culture.”

Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute - Heather A. Horst

"An engaging and thoughtful ethnography of the symbolic and material meaning of globalization for female entrepreneurs. . . . Downtown Ladies will be of interest to anthropologists, sociologists, women and gender studies scholars and others studying women, work, and globalization. Ulysse's experimental ethnographic narrative style will be essential reading to any course on feminist theory, field methods, and ethnography that troubles the notion of the 'native anthropologist.'"
Journal of Anthropological Research - Deborah A. Thomas

"An accessible and theoretically astute read for both undergraduates and graduate students. Because Ulysse consistently ties transformations in self-making to broader processes of change both locally (nationally) and globally, and because she interrogates consumption in relation to a political economy of racialization, the book should be of interest not only to Caribbeanists but also to those anthropologists more generally concerned with globalization and subjectivity."
Bulletin of Latin American Research - Diana Fox

"Graduate students and professionals alike will find [the book] extremely beneficial and inspiring for its competent tackling of some of the most challenging conundrums in contemporary gender theory, critical race theory and cultural anthropology."
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780226841236
  • Publisher: University of Chicago Press
  • Publication date: 9/15/2008
  • Series: Women in Culture and Society
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 304
  • File size: 573 KB

Meet the Author

Gina Ulysse is assistant professor in the departments of anthropology and African-American studies at Wesleyan University.       
 
Read More Show Less

Table of Contents

Foreword by Catharine R. Stimpson
Acknowledgments

Introduction: Toward a Reflexive Political Economy within a Political Economy of Reflexivity
Chapter 1: Of Ladies and Women: Historicizing Gendered Class and Color Codes
Chapter 2: From Higglering to Informal Commercial Importing
Chapter 3: Caribbean Alter(ed)natives: An Auto-Ethnographic Quilt
Chapter 4: Uptown Women/Downtown Ladies: Differences among ICIs
Chapter 5: Inside and Outside of the Arcade: My Downtown Dailies and Miss B.’s Tuffness
Chapter 6: Shopping in Miami: Globalization, Saturated Markets, and the Reflexive Political Economy of ICIs
Chapter 7: Style, Imported Blackness, and My Jelly Platform Shoes
Brawta: Written on Black Bodies: The Futures of ICIs
Notes
Bibliography
Index
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(0)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

    If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
    Why is this product inappropriate?
    Comments (optional)