Living the Revolution: Italian Women's Resistance and Radicalism in New York City, 1880-1945

Univ of North Carolina Press
2
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Italians were the largest group of immigrants to the United States at the turn of the twentieth century, and hundreds of thousands led and participated in some of the period's most volatile labor strikes. Jennifer Guglielmo brings to life the Italian working-class women of New York and New Jersey who helped shape the vibrant radical political culture that expanded into the emerging industrial union movement. Tracing two generations of women who worked in the needle and textile trades, she explores the ways immigrant women and their American-born daughters drew on Italian traditions of protest to form new urban female networks of everyday resistance and political activism. She also shows how their commitment to revolutionary and transnational social movements diminished as they became white working-class Americans.

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About the author

Jennifer Guglielmo is associate professor of history at Smith College. She is coeditor of Are Italians White?: How Race Is Made in America.

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Additional Information

Publisher
Univ of North Carolina Press
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Published on
May 3, 2010
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Pages
416
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ISBN
9780807898222
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Language
English
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Genres
Political Science / Labor & Industrial Relations
Social Science / Sociology / Urban
Social Science / Women's Studies
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Most studies of immigration to the New World have focused on the United States. Samuel L. Baily's eagerly awaited book broadens that perspective through a comparative analysis of Italian immigrants to Buenos Aires and New York City before World War I. It is one of the few works to trace Italians from their villages of origin to different destinations abroad. Baily examines the adjustment of Italians in the two cities, comparing such factors as employment opportunities, skill levels, pace of migration, degree of prejudice, and development of the Italian community. Of the two destinations, Buenos Aires offered Italians more extensive opportunities, and those who elected to move there tended to have the appropriate education or training to succeed. These immigrants, who adjusted more rapidly than their North American counterparts, adopted a long-term strategy of investing savings in their New World home. In New York, in contrast, the immigrants found fewer skilled and white-collar jobs, more competition from previous immigrant groups, greater discrimination, and a less supportive Italian enclave. As a result, rather than put down roots, many sought to earn money as rapidly as possible and send their earnings back to family in Italy. Baily views the migration process as a global phenomenon. Building on his richly documented case studies, the author briefly examines Italian communities in San Francisco, Toronto, and Sao Paulo. He establishes a continuum of immigrant adjustment in urban settings, creating a landmark study in both immigration and comparative history.
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A ground-breaking and brave inside reckoning with the nexus of prison and profit in America: in one Louisiana prison and over the course of our country's history.

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