Ready-to-Wear and Ready-to-Work: A Century of Industry and Immigrants in Paris and New York

Ready-to-Wear and Ready-to-Work: A Century of Industry and Immigrants in Paris and New York

by Nancy L. Green
     
 

ISBN-10: 0822318849

ISBN-13: 9780822318842

Pub. Date: 01/16/1997

Publisher: Duke University Press Books

Nancy L. Green offers a critical and lively look at New York's Seventh Avenue and the Parisian Sentier in this first comparative study of the two historical centers of the women's garment industry. Torn between mass production and "art," this industry is one of the few manufacturing sectors left in the service-centered cities of today. Ready-to-Wear and Ready-to-Work…  See more details below

Overview

Nancy L. Green offers a critical and lively look at New York's Seventh Avenue and the Parisian Sentier in this first comparative study of the two historical centers of the women's garment industry. Torn between mass production and "art," this industry is one of the few manufacturing sectors left in the service-centered cities of today. Ready-to-Wear and Ready-to-Work tells the story of urban growth, the politics of labor, and the relationships among the many immigrant groups who have come to work the sewing machines over the last century.

Green focuses on issues of fashion and fabrication as they involve both the production and consumption of clothing. Traditionally, much of the urban garment industry has been organized around small workshops and flexible homework, and Green emphasizes the effect this labor organization had on the men and mostly women who have sewn the garments. Whether considering the immigrant Jews, Italians, Puerto Ricans, Dominicans, and Chinese in New York or the Chinese-Cambodians, Turks, Armenians, and Russian, Polish, and Tunisian Jews in Paris, she outlines similarities of social experience in the shops and the unions, while allowing the voices of the workers, in all their diversity, to be heard.

A provocative examination of gender and ethnicity, historical conflict and consensus, and notions of class and cultural difference, this innovative volume breaks new ground in the methodology of comparative history. Ready-to-Wear and Ready-to-Work will be of interest to a wide range of scholars, including those engaged in labor, immigrant, and women's history.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780822318842
Publisher:
Duke University Press Books
Publication date:
01/16/1997
Series:
Comparative and International Working-Class History
Pages:
448
Product dimensions:
9.06(w) x 5.91(h) x (d)
Lexile:
1510L (what's this?)

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Introduction1
IFashion as Industry13
1Fashion and Flexibility: The Garment Industry between Haute Couture and Jeans15
2Seventh Avenue44
3The Sentier74
4Bermuda Shorts in Comparative Perspective105
IIThe Social Consequences of Flexibility135
5The Sweatshop as Workplace and Metaphor137
6Women, Immigrants, and Skill in the Garment Shops161
7"An Industry of Passage": The Immigrant Waves188
8Conflict and Consensus on Seventh Avenue219
9Economic and Ethnic Identities in the Parisian Patchwork251
Conclusion280
Notes293
Bibliography379
Index411

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