The National Consumers' League, Women's Activism, and Labor Standards in the New Deal Era
Author: Landon R. Y. Storrs
Publisher: Univ of North Carolina Press
Category: Political Science
Offering fresh insights into the history of labor policy, the New Deal, feminism, and southern politics, Landon Storrs examines the New Deal era of the National Consumers' League, one of the most influential reform organizations of the early twentieth century. Founded in 1899 by affluent women concerned about the exploitation of women wage earners, the National Consumers' League used a strategy of "ethical consumption" to spark a successful movement for state laws to reduce hours and establish minimum wages for women. During the Great Depression, it campaigned to raise labor standards in the unregulated, non-union South, hoping to discourage the relocation of manufacturers to the region because of cheaper labor and to break the downward spiral of labor standards nationwide. Promoting regulation of men's labor as well as women's, the league shaped the National Recovery Administration codes and the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 but still battled the National Woman's Party, whose proposed equal rights amendment threatened sex-based labor laws. Using the National Consumers' League as a window on the nation's evolving reform tradition, Civilizing Capitalism explores what progressive feminists hoped for from the New Deal and why, despite significant victories, they ultimately were disappointed.
Author: Timothy P. Lynch
Publisher: Univ. Press of Mississippi
The Depression brought unprecedented changes for American workers and organized labor. As the economy plummeted, employers cut wages and laid off workers, while simultaneously attempting to wrest more work from those who remained employed. In mills, mines, and factories workers organized and resisted, striking for higher wages, improved working conditions, and the right to bargain collectively. As workers walked the picket line or sat down on the shop floor, they could be heard singing. This book examines the songs they sang at three different strikes- the Gastonia, North Carolina, textile mill strike (1929), Harlan County, Kentucky, coal mining strike (1931-32), and Flint, Michigan, automobile sit-down strike (1936-37). Whether in the Carolina Piedmont, the Kentucky hills, or the streets of Michigan, the workers' songs were decidedly class-conscious. All show the workers' understanding of the necessity of solidarity and collective action. In Flint the strikers sang: The trouble in our homestead Was brought about this way When a dashing corporation Had the audacity to say You must all renounce your union And forswear your liberties, And we'll offer you a chance To live and die in slavery. As a shared experience, the singing of songs not only sent the message of collective action but also provided the very means by which the message was communicated and promoted. Singing was a communal experience, whether on picket lines, at union rallies, or on shop floors. By providing the psychological space for striking workers to speak their minds, singing nurtured a sense of community and class consciousness. When strikers retold the events of their strike, as they did in songs, they spread and preserved their common history and further strengthened the bonds among themselves. In the strike songs the roles of gender were pronounced and vivid. Wives and mothers sang out of their concerns for home, family, and children. Men sang in the name of worker loyalty and brotherhood, championing male solidarity and comaraderie. Informed by the new social history, this critical examination of strike songs from three different industries in three different regions gives voice to a group too often deemed as inarticulate. This study, the only book-length examination of this subject, tells history "from the bottom up" and furthers an understanding of worker culture during the tumultuous Depression years.
Community and Identity in the Federal Theatre Project
Author: Elizabeth A. Osborne
Category: Performing Arts
The Federal Theatre Project, a New Deal plan to fund theatre and other live artistic performances during the Great Depression, had the primary goal of employing out-of-work artists, writers, and directors, with the secondary aim of entertaining poor families and creating relevant art. These case studies explore the ties between the Federal Theatre Project and regional communities throughout the United States.
Letters from the Forgotten Man
Author: Robert S. McElvaine
Publisher: Univ of North Carolina Press
Down and Out in the Great Depression is a moving, revealing collection of letters by the forgotten men, women, and children who suffered through one of the greatest periods of hardship in American history. Sifting through some 15,000 letters from g
Learning from the Successes and Failures of the New Deal
Author: Sheila D. Collins,Gertrude Schaffner Goldberg
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Category: Social Science
When Government Helped systematically evaluates some parallels between The Great Depression and the 2007-2008 global economic meltdown, not only in terms of their economic causes and consequences, but also in terms of their political and cultural contexts and the environmental crises that afflict both periods. The positive and negative lessons for contemporary policy-making are evaluated by a multidisciplinary team of authors across a range of policy arenas. This book is a unique blend of disciplines that presents a new set of guideposts--some beneficial, some cautionary--for the future.
Voting Behavior and Realignment in Boston, 1920-1940
Author: Gerald H. Gamm
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
"Why is The Making of New Deal Democrats so significant? One of the major controversies in the study of American elections has to do with the nature of electoral realignments. One school argues that a realignment involves a major shift of voters from one party to another, while another school argues that the process consists largely of mobilization of previously inactive voters. The debate is crucial for understanding the nature of the New Deal realignment. Almost all previous work on the subject has dealt with large-scale national patterns which make it difficult to pin down the precise processes by which the alignment took place. Gamm's work is most remarkable in that it is a close analysis of shifting voter alignments on the precinct and block level in the city of Boston. His extremely detailed and painstaking work of isolating homogeneous ethnic units over a twenty-year period allows one to trace the voting behavior of the particular ethnic groups that ultimately formed the core of the New Deal realignment."—Sidney Verba, Harvard University
A History of Arkansas Ozarkers & Their Image
Author: Brooks Blevins
Publisher: Univ of North Carolina Press
In the first comprehensive social history of the Arkansas Ozarks from the early 19th century through the end of the 20th century, Blevins examines settlement patterns, farming, economics, class, and tourism. He also explores the development of conflicting images of the Ozarks as a timeless arcadia peopled by quaint, homespun characters or a backward region filled with hillbillies.
Letters from Children of the Great Depression
Author: Robert Cohen
Publisher: Univ of North Carolina Press
Impoverished young Americans had no greater champion during the Depression than Eleanor Roosevelt. As First Lady, Mrs. Roosevelt used her newspaper columns and radio broadcasts to crusade for expanded federal aid to poor children and teens. She was the most visible spokesperson for the National Youth Administration, the New Deal's central agency for aiding needy youths, and she was adamant in insisting that federal aid to young people be administered without discrimination so that it reached blacks as well as whites, girls as well as boys. This activism made Mrs. Roosevelt a beloved figure among poor teens and children, who between 1933 and 1941 wrote her thousands of letters describing their problems and requesting her help. Dear Mrs. Roosevelt presents nearly 200 of these extraordinary documents to open a window into the lives of the Depression's youngest victims. In their own words, the letter writers confide what it was like to be needy and young during the worst economic crisis in American history. Revealing both the strengths and the limitations of New Deal liberalism, this book depicts an administration concerned and caring enough to elicit such moving appeals for help yet unable to respond in the very personal ways the letter writers hoped.
Women, Work, and Fiction in the American 1930s
Author: Laura Hapke
Publisher: University of Georgia Press
Category: Literary Criticism
Daughters of the Great Depression is a reinterpretation of more than fifty well-known and rediscovered works of Depression-era fiction that illuminate one of the decade's central conflicts: whether to include women in the hard-pressed workforce or relegate them to a literal or figurative home sphere. Laura Hapke argues that working women, from industrial wage earners to business professionals, were the literary and cultural scapegoats of the 1930s. In locating these key texts in the "don't steal a job from a man" furor of the time, she draws on a wealth of material not usually considered by literary scholars, including articles on gender and the job controversy; Labor Department Women's Bureau statistics; "true romance" stories and "fallen woman" films; studies of African American women's wage earning; and Fortune magazine pronouncements on white-collar womanhood. A valuable revisionist study, Daughters of the Great Depression shows how fiction's working heroines--so often cast as earth mothers, flawed mothers, lesser comrades, harlots, martyrs, love slaves, and manly or apologetic professionals--joined their real-life counterparts to negotiate the misogynistic labor climate of the 1930s.
How Veteran Politics Shaped the New Deal Era
Author: Stephen R. Ortiz
Publisher: NYU Press
The period between World Wars I and II was a time of turbulent political change, with suffragists, labor radicals, demagogues, and other voices clamoring to be heard. One group of activists that has yet to be closely examined by historians is World War I veterans. Mining the papers of the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) and the American Legion (AL), Stephen R. Ortiz reveals that veterans actively organized in the years following the war to claim state benefits (such as pensions and bonuses), and strove to articulate a role for themselves as a distinct political bloc during the New Deal era. Beyond the Bonus March and GI Bill is unique in its treatment of World War I veterans as significant political actors during the interwar period. Ortiz’s study reinterprets the political origins of the "Second" New Deal and Roosevelt’s electoral triumph of 1936, adding depth not only to our understanding of these events and the political climate surrounding them, but to common perceptions of veterans and their organizations. In describing veteran politics and the competitive dynamics between the AL and the VFW, Ortiz details the rise of organized veterans as a powerful interest group in modern American politics.
Prize Winning Programs
Author: Jeffry M. Diefendorf
During World War II, many European government authorities and planners believed that the damage caused by bombing constituted a great opportunity to transform their cities. Even as the fighting continued, a great many plans were drawn up, and this has been the subject of much scholarship. However, what is often overlooked is wartime planning in cities not damaged in the war. United States cities were not bombed, but in Boston, one of its leading cities, the last years of the war brought a major effort to encourage both new plans to modernize the city and also means of implementing those plans. The wartime initiative to transform Boston had several sources. Both the Great Depression and the war had led to major measures by the federal government to try to deal with fiscal challenges and the need for new housing for the many people who relocated during the war because of the creation of new industries to help the war effort. Boston hoped it could benefit from these measures. Moreover, in the late 1930s, Harvard University had become a key residence for figures important in modernist planning, including Joseph Hudnut, Walter Gropius and Martin Wagner. These factors combined in 1944 to inspire what was called The Boston Contest. Its goal was to suggest solutions to many problems found in the metropolitan area. These issues included commercial and industrial developments, housing, transportation, education, recreation, welfare, urban finances, metropolitan government, and citizen participation in solving problems. This book, published in 1945 contains the top 3 prize winning entries and excerpts from 9 of the other nearly 100 entries. It gives a fascinating insight into the developing ideas of urban planning in the United States at a critical juncture.
Author: Carole Marsh
Publisher: Gallopade International
Category: Juvenile Nonfiction
For nearly ten years, the wealth and prosperity of the "roaring '20s" had electrified America. The Stock Market was making people richer by the day. But in three fateful days in October 1929, all of that wealth vanished, and prosperity turned to poverty. The Great Depression had begun, and with it came record levels of unemployment, job loss, and despair. Then, just when all hope seemed lost, a presidential candidate promised "a new deal for the American people." That man was Franklin D. Roosevelt, and this is the story of the Great Depression and how the New Deal saved the United States. In this book, kids will wander the streets of the largest cities and smallest towns with adults looking for any way to eke out a living. They'll ride creaky old wagons in the mass exodus out of the Dust Bowl that was once the Great Plains, and they'll wade through the "alphabet soup" of New Deal programs that President Roosevelt created - just in the nick of time! This 32-page book is reproducible and educational. A partial list of the Table of Contents include: A Timeline of Events "Brother, Can You Spare a Dime": The Great Depression & The New Deal Herbert Hoover The Great Stock Market Crash Banks Fail Franklin D. Roosevelt New Deal Tennessee Valley Authority Social Security Federal Communications Commission Securities and Exchange Commission Additional Resources Glossary And More This fun-fill activity book includes: Create the Front Page of a Newspaper Make Indian Pudding Do the Math Maze Chronological Order Matching Unscramble Words True or False And Much More!
Pennsylvanians During the Great Depression
Author: Thomas H. Coode,John F. Bauman
Publisher: Bucknell University Press
This book examines the impact of the Great Depression on Pennsylvania, covering, in addition to politics, such topics as social and physical deprivation, black housing, labor conflict, relief, and the revival of the United Mine Workers of America. Illustrated.
A History of Social Work and Social Policy in the United States
Author: John H. Ehrenreich
Publisher: Cornell University Press
Social work and social policy in the United States have always had a complex and troubled relationship. In The Altruistic Imagination, John H. Ehrenreich offers a critical interpretation of their intertwined histories, seeking to understand the problems that face these two vital institutions in American society. Ehrenreich demonstrates that the emphasis of social work has always vacillated between individual treatment and social reform. Tracing this ever-changing focus from the Progressive Era, through the development of the welfare state, the New Deal, and the affluent 1950s and 1960s, into the administration of Ronald Reagan, he places the evolution of social work in the context of political, cultural, and ideological trends, noting the paradoxes inherent in the attempt to provide essential services and reflect at the same time the intentions of the state. He concludes by examining the turning point faced by the social work profession in the 1980s, indicated by a return to casework and a withdrawal from social policy concerns.
How We Remember the National Game
Author: James D. Hardy, Jr.
Category: Sports & Recreation
Why do some events become transcendent moments of cultural significance, while others fade into relative obscurity? This book answers that question by studying baseball, and examines why moments like Ruth's called shot have become American cultural myths, while many other players, games and events have not.
The Politics of South Carolina Millhands, 1910-1948
Author: Bryant Simon
Publisher: Univ of North Carolina Press
In this book, Bryant Simon brings to life the politics of white South Carolina millhands during the first half of the twentieth century. His revealing and moving account explores how this group of southern laborers thought about and participated in politics and public power. Taking a broad view of politics, Simon looks at laborers as they engaged in political activity in many venues--at the polling station, on front porches, and on the shop floor--and examines their political involvement at the local, state, and national levels. He describes the campaign styles and rhetoric of such politicians as Coleman Blease and Olin Johnston (himself a former millhand), who eagerly sought the workers' votes. He draws a detailed picture of mill workers casting ballots, carrying placards, marching on the state capital, writing to lawmakers, and picketing factories. These millhands' politics reflected their public and private thoughts about whiteness and blackness, war and the New Deal, democracy and justice, gender and sexuality, class relations and consumption. Ultimately, the people depicted here are neither romanticized nor dismissed as the stereotypically racist and uneducated "rednecks" found in many accounts of southern politics. Southern workers understood the political and social forces that shaped their lives, argues Simon, and they developed complex political strategies to deal with those forces.