Class and Labor in American History
Professor James Gregory
· James Green, Death in the Haymarket: A Story of Chicago, the First Labor Movement and the Bombing that Divided Gilded Age America
· Barbara Ehrenreich, Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting By in America
· Carlos Bulosan, America is in the Heart
· Rick Fantasia and Kim Voss, Hard Work: Remaking the American Labor Movement
Midterm, final, 1-2 page Unemployed Nation Hearings report, 3-4 page labor event observation paper, and 7-10 page research paper or service learning report. No one may pass the course without completing each of these assignments.
They will be weighted as follows: midterm (25%), final (25%), research paper or service learning project (30%), Unemployment Hearings report (3%), labor event report (7%), class participation (10%). The class participation grade will depend largely on the weekly discussions of assigned readings and on several short response-to-readings assignments. Generally we will set aside an hour each Thursday to discuss the readings.
SCHEDULE OF LECTURES & READINGS
Week 2: (read
Ehrenreich, Nickel and Dimed, 120-221)
Week 3: (read Green, Death
in Haymarket, 1-159)
Week 4: (read Green, Death
in Haymarket, 160-320)
Week 5 : (readings
for research projects TBA)
Week 6 : (readings
for research projects TBA)
Week 7: (read Bulosan, America
is in the Heart, 1-151)
Week 8: (read Bulosan, America is in the Heart, 152-327)
Week 9: (read Fantasia and
Voss, Hard Work, 1-119)
LABOR EVENT OBSERVATION PAPER
The object of this assignment is to learn something about how contemporary labor movements operate. You should make plans to observe a labor event, either a cultural event, meeting, picket line, or protest Then submit a 3-4 page observation paper describing what you have seen and offering observations and analysis of what it reveals about contemporary labor culture. What attitudes and practices do you observe? Do they reflect aspects of labor history and labor culture that we have been discussing in class? By labor culture I mean ideas, values, rituals, symbols, tactics, etc. Grades will be based on the quality of observations and the quality of writing. This assignment should be completed early and turned in as soon as possible. Deadline: May 8.
See Observation Paper topics for list of events. As I learn about events, I will post them. Feel free to suggest others.
RESEARCH PAPER/ SERVICE LEARNING
There are two options for this assignment: (1) a 7-10 page historical research paper (2) participate in a service learning assignment with an eligible union or poverty program and write a 7-10 page report. Consult the website for full descriptions of each.
Research Paper Option
These projects will require library research involving primary sources (either the Labor Archives in Special Collections Library or microfilmed newspapers) and secondary sources (books, dissertations, and articles). The starting place for all research is the library online catalogue http://catalog.lib.washington.edu/search~ Use the search function of the catalogue to locate the call numbers of books, dissertations, and newspapers listed below.
Primary Sources Locations: The Labor Archives are part of Special Collections Library located in the basement level of Allen Library; Newspapers/Microform is located on the first floor of Suzzallo Library.
(1) Great Depression/ Unemployment projects:
· Olympia Hunger March of 1933 (1/17/33 and 3/2/33)
· Unemployed Citizens League 1931-1934
· Unemployed Councils of the Communist Party 1931-1933
· The Workers Alliance (1935-1938)
Several other topics about
(b) Other 1930s Events
· Boeing and the early years of the machinist union
· 1936 Newspaper Guild Strike
· Washington Commonwealth Builders and the 1934 Election
· The Church of the People
· Free Speech and civil liberties during the Depression
· African American workers during the Depression
· Public power and the 1931 recall of Mayor Frank Edwards
(2) Labor Yearbook Projects:
We are developing yearly accounts of labor activism in Washington State. This project involves reading the Seattle Union Record on microfilm for one of the years prior the 1919 Seattle General Strike. Collect a digital copy of all articles about strikes or labor protests, create an excel database, and write a summary report. Here is an example report and database: http://depts.washington.edu/labhist/encyclopedia/yearbook1918.shtml
· 1914 strikes and protests in Seattle Union Record
· 1916 strikes and protests in Seattle Union Record
· 1917 strikes and protests in Seattle Union Record
· Other years also possible
(3) Other Event Papers:
These projects will be based on research in primary and secondary sources. You will work with archival records in Special Collections Library, microfilm newspapers, and also books and articles written by historians. The goal is to write a detailed account of the event or issue. Here is a preliminary list of potential topics. You will find detailed descriptions and sources on the website. We will also post additional potential topics soon.
· 1886 Campaign against Chinese in Tacoma and Seattle.
· 1905 Seattle streetcar strike
· 1913 Seattle Teamsters strike
· Anarchist colony of “Home”
· 1916 Longshore Strike (May-October)
· Spying on Labor 1919-1922
· May Day demonstrations 1908-1920
· Biography of Harry Ault, Socialist editor
· Colored Marine Employment Benevolent Association (CMEBA) vs. the Marine Cooks and Stewards Association of the Pacific (MCSAP)
· 1948 Longshore Strike
· 1948 Boeing Strike (March-November)
(4) Mapping Projects : (locate sites, photograph sites, write short descriptions)
Service Learning Option
We have arranged with the Carlson Leadership and Public Service Center for service learning positions with the following organizations:
· American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (AFTRA)
· Harry Bridges Center for Labor Studies
· Labor Archives of Washington State, UW Library
· Martin Luther King Jr. County Labor Council
· OPEIU Local 8
· Organization United for Reform (OUR)
· Seattle CISPES
· Statewide Poverty Action Network (SPAN)
· Unemployment Law Project
· Puget Sound Sage
· Teamsters Local 117
· History House of Greater Seattle
· Justice Works!
· Washington Fair Trade Coalition
Most will require 5 or more hours of work each week. Your grade for this assignment will be based in equal parts on work performance and your final paper. This will be a report about the organization and how it is addressing the current economic and political crisis. It will be based on your observations and you will hopefully also have a chance to interview one or more officials of the organization. It should be 7-10 pages in length.
More information: visit the Carlson Center web site at www.depts.washington.edu/leader and follow the link to SPRING 2012 Service-Learning. You can log in using your UW Net ID to browse positions. For this class, service-learning registration opens on Thursday, March 29th at 8 am and closes on Monday, April 2nd at noon.