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Working Women into the Borderlands (Connecting the Greater West Series)


Working Women into the Borderlands (Connecting the Greater West Series)

2.5 (2022)

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    Available in PDF Format | Working Women into the Borderlands (Connecting the Greater West Series).pdf | English
    Sonia Hernández(Author) Sterling D. Evans(Foreword)
In Working Women into the Borderlands, author Sonia Hernández sheds light on how women’s labor was shaped by US capital in the northeast region of Mexico and how women’s labor activism simultaneously shaped the nature of foreign investment and relations between Mexicans and Americans. As capital investments fueled the growth of heavy industries in cities and ports such as Monterrey and Tampico, women’s work complemented and strengthened their male counterparts’ labor in industries which were historically male-dominated.

As Hernández reveals, women laborers were expected to maintain their “proper” place in society, and work environments were in fact gendered and class-based. Yet, these prescribed notions of class and gender were frequently challenged as women sought to improve their livelihoods by using everyday forms of negotiation including collective organizing, labor arbitration boards, letter writing, creating unions, assuming positions of confianza (“trustworthiness”), and by migrating to urban centers and/or crossing into Texas.

Drawing extensively on bi-national archival sources, newspapers, and published records, Working Women into the Borderlands demonstrates convincingly how women’s labor contributions shaped the development of one of the most dynamic and contentious borderlands in the globe.

"A passionate and careful exploration of the role of women's labor in the making of the Mexican Northeast. This work belongs on the bookshelves of all who care about the region's past." --Dr. Benjamin Johnson, University of Wisconsin-Milwaulkee"Sonia Hernandez' extraordinary book makes an important contribution to the expanding field of the U.S.-Mexican borderland. Based on a wide range of sources, it is the first comprehensive study on the Mexican northeast and South Texas, from San Antonio in the north to Tampico in the south, a region that has not received much attention from borderland historians. Focusing on the impact of "modernization" on class, race and gender, Hernandez provides important insight into the changing world of labor on both sides of the international boundary, especially women workers who toiled in factories, sweatshops, and large estates. In doing this, Hernandez presents a deep understanding of the norteno borderlands, labor, and women history. Working Women into the Borderlands is essential reading for anyone seeking to understand the early stages of U.S.-Mexican economic integration and the role of labor."--Juan Mora-Torres, author, The Making of the Mexican Border: The State, Capitalism and Society in Nuevo Leon, 1848-1910.

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