Eileen Boris – Nelson Lichtenstein, eds. Major Problems in the History of American Workers. Documents and Essays.

Biblioteca / 1990-1999

Eileen Boris – Nelson Lichtenstein, editors. Major Problems in the History of American Workers. Documents and Essays.

Lexington, MA: D. C. Heath, 1991.

xv, 686 páginas.



1 – The Meaning of Work and the History of Labor


David Brody • The New Labor History

Elizabeth H. Pleck • Work and Family

Michael Reich • Capitalism, Class, and Labor History

2 – The Labor Systems of Early America


An Indentured Servant’s Letter Home, 1623

«The Trappan’d Maiden: Or, The Distressed Damsel,» (A Popular Song, Mid-Seventeenth Century)

Traveler Peter Kalm on Unfree Labor in Pennsylvania, 1753

Olaudah Equiano Survives the Middle Passage, 1791

Ebenezer Parkman’s Record of a Rural Minister’s Diverse Work, 1726, 1728, 1748

Ruth Belknap, a Country Parson’s Wife, on «The Pleasures of a Country Life,» c. 1782

First Mate Edward Coxere Describes a Storm at Sea, 1659


Richard S. Dunn • Servants and Slaves: Portraits in White and Black

Laurel Thatcher Ulrich • Housewives and Household Labor in Colonial America

Marcus Rediker • Workers on the High Seas: Shipboard Solidarity, 1700-1750

3 – From the Artisan’s Republic to the Factory System


David Johnson Remembers Apprenticeship Life in the Artisan Shoe Shop, 1830

«Cordwainers’ Song,» 1844

Constance, “On the Art of Shoemaking,” 1845

A Reporter’s Account of Lynn Women’s Mass Meeting During the Great Strike, 1860

Textile Operative William Shaw’s Testimony on Child Labor in Pennsylvania’s Textile Mills, 1838

Amelia, a Woman Worker, Protests Lowell Wage Slavery, 1845


Alan Dawley • Lynn Shoemakers: Class Solidarity in the Great Strike

Maty Blewett • Conflict Among Lynn’s Shoemakers

4 – Slavery and the Transition to Free Labor


A Record of Plantation Management, 1850

The Slave Solomon Northup’s View of Cotton Planting and Harvesting, 1854

Twentieth-Century Women Recall Their Work Lives in Slavery, 1930s

A Planter on Child Rearing, 1836

Frederick Douglass Confronts Working-Class Racism, 1836

A Northern Unionist Lectures Ex-Slaves on the Work Ethic, 1865

“We Demand Land»: Petition by Southern Freedmen, 1865

Ned Cobb on Sharecropping, 1913


Eugene Genovese • The Plantation Work Ethic

Eric Foner • Emancipation and the Reconstruction of Southern Labor

5 – From Peasant to Proletarian


Investigator John Fitch Describes Steel’s Long Shift, 1912

Economist John R. Commons Denounces the “Sweating System,» 1901

Tenement-Life Scenes of Lewis Hine, 1911

African-American Letters on Migrating North, 1917

African-American Leaders Laud Black Women’s Progress in Industry, 1924

Employer Views of Foreign Beet Workers, 1911

Migrant Agricultural Labor Speaks Out, 1951-1952

U.S. Farm Workers Attack Competition from Illegal Migrants, 1952

CIO Resolution on Foreign Migrant Workers, 1951


Herbert Gutman • The Cultures of First-Generation Industrial Workers

Jacqueline Jones • From Farm to City: Southern Black Women Move North, 1900-1930

Ronald Takaki • Asian Immigrants Raise Cane: The World of Plantation Hawaii

6 – The Organization of Labor


«Labor’s Great Army,» 1889

Samuel Gompers Defends the Strike, 1899

An A.F.L. View of Women Workers, 1897

Unionist Alice Henry on Why Women Need Their Own Local Unions, 1915

Preamble of the Industrial Workers of the World, 1908

IWW Founder William Trautmann Explains Why Strikes Are Lost, 1911


Jama Lazerow • Power and Respectability: The Knights of Labor

Michael Kazin • Union Power in the Building Trades

Alice Kessler-Harris • The Labor Movement’s Failure to Organize Women Workers

7 – Cultures of the Workplace


Miner John Brophy Learns His Trade, 1907

A Waitress And Her Customers, 1917

Letters from an Apprentice Nurse, 1939

A Student’s View of «Soldiering,» 1931


David Montgomery • Work Rules and Manliness in the World of the Nineteenth-Century Craftsman

Barbara Melosh • The Work Culture of Nurses


Americans at Work in the Industrial Era

8 – The Managerial Ethos


Frederick Winslow Taylor on the Principles of Scientific Management, 1916

A Macy’s Manager on Department-Store Bureaucracy, 1925

A Unionist Explores Management Life in the 1950s, 1978

Social Science at the Service of Management, 1957


Stephen Meyer • The Making of Ford’s Assembly Line

Susan Porter Benson • Taylorizing the Shopgirl

9 – Industrial Unionism During the Great Depression


Communist John Steuben Organizes in Steel, 1936

Stanley Nowak Organizes a Slowdown Strike, 1937

For UAW Shop Stewards: «How to Win for the Union,» 1941

Union Leaders Oppose Shop-Floor Agitators, 1941


Melvyn Dubofsky • Not So Radical Years: Another Look at the 1930s

Bruce Nelson • Radical Years: Working-Class Consciousness on the Waterfront in the 1930s

10 – Labor and the State


In re Debs, 1895

Muller v. Oregon, 1908

Adkins v. Children’s Hospital, 1923

Preamble of the National Labor Relations Act, 1935

A Union Man Gets His Job Back, 1938

Testimony for and Against the Fair Labor Standards Act, 1937

Employers Attack the Union Shop, 1958

The Unions Denounce the Taft-Hartley Act, 1957


Howell Harris • Politicians, Bureaucrats, and the Shaping of Federal Labor-Relations Policy

Eileen Boris • New Deal Reformers Use the Government to Protect Women Workers

11 – Race, Gender, and Industrial Unionism: World War II and Its Aftermath


The War Labor Board Assails Workplace Racism, 1943

The War Labor Board Orders Equal Pay for Equal Work, 1944

The Crisis Predicts a Surge in NAACP Membership, 1943

The House Committee on Un-American Activities Harasses a Black Union Official, 1952

Women’s Work in a California Warplane Factory, 1941-1945


Robert Korstad and Nelson Lichtenstein • How Organized Black Workers Brought Civil Rights to the South

Ruth Milkman • How Women Were Purged from the War Plants

12 – Trade Unions in the Postwar Order


The CIO Attacks a Communist-Led Union, 1949

Anticommunist Sentiment in the UAW, 1980

An Arbitrator Upholds the Authority of Ford Supervision, 1944

A Shop Steward on the Frustrations of the Contract System, 1954

Fortune Magazine Applauds the U.S. Labor Movement, 1951


David Oshinsky • Labor’s Cold War: The CIO and the Communists

Nelson Lichtenstein • The Unions’ Retreat in the Postwar Era

13 – The Postwar Working Class


Sociologist Daniel Bell’s «Post-Industrial» Vision, 1973

Fred Roman on the Life of an Accountant, 1972

Women Office Workers Face Dead-End Clerical Work, 1977

The Day-Care Nightmare, 1988

A Worker Pleads the Case for Family and Medical Leave, 1987


Andrew Levison • The Working-Class Majority

Heidi Hartmann • Working Women Change Their Lives

14 – Workers and Their Unions in Troubled Times


The Options Ahead for the Debt Economy, 1974

A Consultant’s Techniques for Smashing Unions, 1979

Construction Unions Try to Shore Up a Crumbling Foundation, 1985

The AFL-CIO Condems the Federal Labor Law, 1985

Steelworkers Face a Bleak Future After Layoffs, 1984

Latino Workers: A Scapegoat for Mass Unemployment? 1982

Management’s Weapon: Scab Labor, 1990

Clerical Workers Win at Harvard University, 1989

The UMW Journal on How the Mine Workers Won at Pittston, 1990


Kim Moody • Concession Bargaining and the Decline of Industrial Unionism in the 1980s

Deborah E. Bell • Women and the Rise of Public-Sector Unionism Since the 1960s

15 – The Future of Work Page


Smart Machines Make Smart Workers, 1988

The New Taylorism in a Japanese-Managed Auto Factory, 1988

Computerized Order Taking at McDonald’s, 1988

A Unionist Blasts Overseas Office Work, 1987

Secretary of Labor Ann McLaughlin Makes the Case for Home Work, 1988

Return of the Sweatshops, 1988

A Technology Bill of Rights, 1981


Harley Shaiken • Computers Against the Unions

Paul Adler • Technology: Good for the Workers

M. Patricia Femandez-Kelly and Anna M. Garcia • Hispanic Women and the Persistence of the Informal Economy


American Labor: A Statistical Portrait