Sweated Work, Weak Bodies: Anti-Sweatshop Campaigns and Languages of Labor

Overview

In the early 1900s, thousands of immigrants labored in New York's Lower East Side sweatshops, enduring work environments that came to be seen as among the worst examples of Progressive-Era American industrialization. Although reformers agreed that these unsafe workplaces must be abolished, their reasons have seldom been fully examined. Sweated Work, Weak Bodies is the first book on the origins of sweatshops, exploring how they came to represent the dangers of industrialization and the perils of immigration. It is...
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Sweated Work, Weak Bodies: Anti-Sweatshop Campaigns and Languages of Labor

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Overview

In the early 1900s, thousands of immigrants labored in New York's Lower East Side sweatshops, enduring work environments that came to be seen as among the worst examples of Progressive-Era American industrialization. Although reformers agreed that these unsafe workplaces must be abolished, their reasons have seldom been fully examined. Sweated Work, Weak Bodies is the first book on the origins of sweatshops, exploring how they came to represent the dangers of industrialization and the perils of immigration. It is an innovative study of the language used to define the sweatshop, how these definitions shaped the first anti-sweatshop campaign, and how they continue to influence our current understanding of the sweatshop.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780813533384
  • Publisher: Rutgers University Press
  • Publication date: 1/28/2004
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 288
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Introduction: The Language and the Limits of Anti-Sweatshop Organizing 1
1 Eastern European Jews and the Rise of a Transnational Garment Economy 23
2 "The Great Jewish Metier": Factor Inspectors, Jewish Workers, and Defining the Sweatshop, 1880-1910 42
3 "A Race Ignorant, Miserable, and Immoral": Sweatshop Danger and Labor in the Home, 1890-1910 61
4 Workers Made Well: Home, Work, Homework, and the Model Shop, 1910-1930 77
5 Gaunt Men, Gaunt Wives: Femininity, Masculinity, and the Worker Question, 1880-1909 105
6 Inspecting Bodies: Sexual Difference and Strategies of Organizing, 1910-1930 132
7 "Swallowed Up in a Sea of Masculinity": Factionalism and Gender Struggles in the ILGWU, 1909-1934 155
Conclusion: "Our Marching Orders...Advance toward the Goal of Industrial Decency": Measuring the Burden of Language 181
Epilogue: Anti-Sweatshop Campaigns in a New Century 188
Notes 197
Index 253
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