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On Gender and Class in U.S. Labor History

Johanna Brenner is coordinator of women’s studies at Portland State University in Oregon and the author of Women and the Politics of Class (Monthly Review Press, 2000). She has written for New Left Review, and Gender & Society, among other journals, and is a longtime activist for reproductive rights, welfare rights, and socialism.

The relationship between gender and class, central to understanding the history of the labor movement, raises important issues for Marxist analysis in general. Grappling with the complexities of this relationship forces us to confront a wide range of theoretical and practical questions. What is the connection between “material conditions” and “identity”? What role do culture, discourses, sexuality, and emotions play in shaping people’s responses to their material conditions? How are the varieties of consciousness of class related to other identities and affiliations? These questions challenge us theoretically and politically, as we seek to develop a working-class politics that incorporates struggles against all forms of oppression.

We can approach these questions historically by asking how and why working-class men have, throughout the history of the labor movement, often chosen forms of trade union organization and strategies that systematically disadvantaged women workers—excluding women from their unions and, when they did organize with women, accepting, even demanding, gendered occupations and wage differentials. Feminist historians have differed in explaining this. Some have emphasized men’s gendered material interests, pointing out how women’s low wages shore up men’s power in the home. Others have emphasized pyschological and cultural factors, exploring how cultural definitions of masculinity (what it means to be a “real” man) motivated men’s actions. Rather than counterposing explanations which draw on interests, emotions and culture, I want to suggest some ways to understand how they are linked.

Survival Projects

I would start with the concept of survival projects, the ways people group together in order to live in capitalist society. These projects take different forms, from the most narrow and individualistic modes of striving to mass collective action. Individuals may be very conscious of making strategic choices, or they may adopt them more or less unconsciously. In either case, people must enter into various kinds of affiliation to secure the basic necessities of life. These patterns of affiliation are fundamental to how individuals define the boundaries of their solidarities, how they position themselves in relation to others, how they organize a worldview, and how they develop their various definitions of self, including their gendered identities.

I want to use the notion of survival projects because it is a way of talking about material life that recognizes the importance of individuals’ motives and action, while placing these in specific social and historical contexts. We can conceptualize resistance and accommodation as outcomes of a process that is simultaneously cultural, individual, psychological, collective, and social. Individuals are situated in workplaces and communities, within which they develop understandings, feelings, and intentions. Through groups, individuals try to establish some control over their situation in the labor market as well as vis a vis particular employers. And because most working-class people (in contrast to more affluent professionals and managers) cannot reproduce themselves entirely through the market, groups are also constituted by exchanges (of money and unpaid labor) outside the capitalist economy.

There is no such thing as an identity abstracted from social practice. Like other identities, gender is negotiated and renegotiated in the practices of everyday life. Strategies that working-class people adopt for economic survival within the rules of the capitalist game shape these everyday practices in fundamental ways. These survival strategies will necessarily include forms of mutual support, not only in the workplace but outside of waged work—relations of sharing and solidarity across households, in neighborhoods, in kinship and friendship networks, in communities, and so on. Key resources include sharing cash income, bartering services such as childcare, and sharing living space.

Although historically women have predominated in creating social networks outside the workplace, I am not at all suggesting that we should locate gender in community while class belongs at work. Rather, I am suggesting that households, survival networks (of kin, fictive kin and friends), neighborhoods, and workplaces are interrelated. Until well into the twentieth century, communal ties created a base of support for worker protest and trade union organization, as well as women’s community organizing (the cooperative movement, rent strikes, and so forth). But communal ties can also be sources of ethnic and racial hostility as communities, formed through particularistic and local sharing networks, compete with each other for scarce resources (jobs, better neighborhoods, and the like).

In contemporary capitalism, personal survival networks may not be as centered within spatial communities as they once were (although this might be debated). Yet they remain crucial resources, determining the level of individual and family well-being. And, operating in a normal everyday way, they reproduce distributions of relative privilege among groups within the working class. The role that friends and kin play, for example, in facilitating access to employment is well-documented and an important source of racial and ethnic segregation in the occupational structure.

Many feminists have rightly argued that identities are multiple (one is never simply a worker) and that different identities are not lived separately. One is not a worker here, a woman there, and a person of color elsewhere. Feminist labor historians have also emphasized that women, like men, develop identities as workers. Further, while feelings mobilized by workplace-based identity, the intense commitment to a particular self-definition, have a gendered character, these feelings and commitments do not arise only from meanings of gender.

This is important to emphasize from the start. When we talk about gendered workers, we risk associating with gender the emotional components of identity in which gender “modifies” workers, as if workers’ identities reflect rational calculations of material interest, while gender arises from sexuality, culture, and emotion. But workers’ identities, in their many variations, also have unconscious and emotional components. They mobilize feelings as much as gender does. And, on the other side, gender identities, while drawing on cultural meanings and mobilizing sexuality, are constructed within material relations, relations defined by the survival strategies through which people accomplish their basic life tasks.

Cultural meanings of gender, like cultural meanings of class, are produced by men and women within group life, on and off the job. However, because the production of meaning is itself a group process, it is also intensely political. The choices that groups of people make about such matters as how to organize their survival, how to represent themselves, how to resist and where to accommodate, and who within the group has rights to what valued goods, is a product of negotiation and struggle. The outcome, therefore, reflects the different kinds and levels of resources that men and women bring into the process (as, for example, skilled craft workers, unskilled workers, legal or undocumented immigrants, married women, or single mothers).

How men and women affiliate—at work and outside it—both reflects gender identities and creates them. Group affiliations respond to a complex set of constraints and opportunities. These constraints and opportunities cannot be reduced to the operations of the capitalist economy, but neither can they be divorced from them. In what follows, I give some examples of how we might make the connection.

Sectorial Strategies and Market Competition

Workers in capitalism are pulled apart as much as (perhaps even more than) they are pushed toward collective action. The operations of the capitalist market constrain the strategies of both employers and workers and tend to reproduce particularistic group identities and exclusionary strategies. If workplace relations tend to enhance workers’ recognition of their common condition, competition in the labor market tends to encourage individualistic strategies for survival. That workers have been able to overcome individualistic tendencies through unionization should not blind us to the very real difficulties and barriers that have to be faced and overcome.

An analysis of gender and strategic choices ought to take these difficulties sufficiently into account, acknowledging that the competitive structure of the labor market threatens to undermine solidarity and divide groups of workers from each other. Although trade unions are common strategies for countering employers, trade unions have often organized on a relatively narrow basis, hardly constituted as organizations of the working class as a whole. Organizing to secure immediate, short-run economic advantages often runs counter to organizing based on longer-run possibilities for challenging employers on a more class-wide basis. From this point of view, working men’s individualistic or narrowly-based group strategies for survival may have been the source for certain kinds of masculine identities as much as a consequence of them.

The fact that male workers have adopted exclusionary and elitist attitudes toward other men and not just toward women further supports this idea. Control over a craft, for instance, required control over apprenticeship and employment. Skilled workers narrowed the potential labor pool by using many different criteria for entry into their trade: not only gender, but kinship (training only sons or close relatives), geography (city printers refusal to unionize country printers who undercut them), ethnicity, race, and so forth. Faced with employers’ efforts to avoid established apprenticeship systems and to use lower-paid skilled male workers (immigrants, rural workers, etc.) to undercut their rates, craft unions followed the same exclusionary tactics, striking against the employment of non-union workers rather than attempting to unionize them. Masculinity of a certain sort (e.g., white or native-born) was produced and mobilized to delimit the areas of labor belonging to unionized men and to justify their exclusionary strategies.

In following sectorial strategies, male craft workers were not unique. Competition among workers over jobs and as members of different occupations and industries can and often does overwhelm and obscure the common interests that they have as a class. The skilled disregard the unskilled, the organized disregard the unorganized, the stronger unions disregard the weaker ones—and this happens among workers who share ethnic identity or gender as well as those who do not. Sectorial organization, narrow strategies in which some sets of workers secure their immediate economic interests even to the detriment of others, can characterize industrial as well as craft unions. (Conversely, skilled craft workers are as capable as industrial workers of developing very broad-based conceptions of solidarity—for example, the Knights of Labor in 1884-1887.) The point is that when we look at labor history we don’t necessarily see “working-class identities” arising out of trade union organization. We may see a range of understandings, organizations, and practices within trade unions, reflecting very different conceptions of what it means to be a worker and even very different views of whether all workers belong to a “working class.”

When working women have organized on the basis of craft exclusion rather than industrial organization, they have, like nineteenth-century male craft workers, adopted patronizing attitudes toward other workers and profound emotional commitments to maintaining occupational boundaries and divisions of labor in the workplace.1 Registered nurses have been no more willing to take “less credentialed” hospital workers into their unions than male craftsmen were willing to assimilate the “lesser skilled” women workers into theirs. Unionized women teachers have often made separate contract deals with school administrations and failed to support the demands and organizing of clerical workers and teachers’ aides.

If craftsmen clung to masculine craft identities rather than adopt new strategies as their industries changed and women entered their workplaces, so have women workers developed feminine craft identities embedded in particular strategies for organizing against their employers. Conflicts among women workers can look very much like those between women and men. Waitresses successfully organized along gender-segregated craft lines in the 1920s and 1930s, developing fierce commitments to an identity as female workers, doing work that was different from that of men but equally skilled. In the 1960s, they clung to these identities, and to the forms of organization that had served them so well as against a younger generation of waitresses, working under very different conditions in an expanding and reorganizing food service industry.

By the early 1970s, at the height of the feminist movement, younger waitresses turned to the courts to demand access to jobs (elite food service, bartending) that had previously been closed to women. They also sought to change union strategy, abandoning craft unionism for a more industrial mode. According to historian Dorothy Sue Cobble, older waitress leaders experienced this challenge as an assault on their identities as skilled craft workers as well as their leadership positions, reacting with anger and mobilizing to squelch the opposition. The highly factionalized political situation starkly counterposed strategies which otherwise might have been melded together and, preserving some of the older strategies, strengthened waitress organizing even in the new conditions.2

Gender Divisions of Labor and Strategic Choices

More privileged workers can choose to protect themselves on the labor market by organizing to establish or defend a racial or gendered occupational structure. But whether workers can successfully carry out this kind of strategy depends upon whether employers are willing to accommodate the particular distribution of relative privilege and upon whether marginalized groups are in a position to challenge these strategies. To understand whether and when women successfully resist, we need to consider both how they construe their interests and what resources for contestation are available to them at different times and places. We must look beyond the workplace and labor market to survival networks organized around a gendered division of labor, networks which have been and continue to be primary strategies for working people to secure their conditions of life.

Women’s responsibilities for care-giving have provided resources and posed limitations. They have structured women’s interests as well as their identities. On the one hand, women have used these responsibilities to successfully make claims on men and on their communities. In the past (and even today, to a certain extent), women’s sharing networks enabled mothers to participate in wage work. And out of these networks women developed solidarity for political action—as community members and as trade union activists.3

On the other hand, care-giving responsibilities are also constraints. They hamper women’s collective self-organization, especially in organizations and struggles which extend beyond the community level. Historically, the more localized and communal a working-class organization is, the easier it has been for women to participate in action and organization, to take on leadership roles, to develop their own demands and ways of representing themselves, and to contest with men. The more centralized, bureaucratic, and trans-local working-class organizations are, the easier it is for men to monopolize decision making and marginalize women. Limitations on women’s participation were cultural (definitions of leadership, and notions of masculine authority and the role of women in the public sphere) but also material. In the first instance, care-giving responsibilities restricted women’s leadership beyond the local level. Until quite recently most women union leaders and organizers were single, childless, or had grown children. But even when individual women fought their way into leadership at the regional or national level, they were isolated, lacking a collective political base.4

Care-giving responsibilities shaped working-class women’s interests, creating potentials for both solidarity and conflict. Single women, daughters of working-class families, single mothers, and married women have adopted different survival strategies, which in turn shape their own as well as their family members’ participation in work and workers’ protest. Married women dependent on a male breadwinner and young single women workers living in male-headed households had very different real interests from those women workers who were sole or primary wage-earners for themselves or their families. In many instances, married women supported the efforts of predominantly young and single female workers to unionize and receive higher wages. And at times female solidarity has been built across significant divides—for instance, between married women home workers and single women factory workers.5 On the other hand, in struggles where men have promoted their own interests at the expense of single female workers, cross-cutting alliances have sometimes undermined female solidarity, as married women have thrown their support behind the men of the community.6

Conflicts surfaced between married and single women workers in the electrical industry in the years immediately following the Second World War over who had more “right” to hold onto their wartime jobs. This division occurred in the context of pervasive fears about post-war unemployment, unions dominated by men numerically and politically, and a hegemonic male breadwinner ideology unchallenged by any feminist organization either inside or outside the trade unions.7

Women’s strategic choices are, like men’s, shaped by a complex set of constraints and resources, needs and opportunities. These, again, reflect not only their position in the labor market (e.g., their levels of skill, the demand for their labor) but also how they are positioned within the communities on which they depend for their survival and how their communities are positioned in relation to others. Some of the key factors here are the degree of political support for women’s claims to wage work, the degree to which women can actually rely on male breadwinners for support, and, in relation to the former, their community’s norms of motherhood and womanhood. The different strategic choices of white and black women workers in one case study illuminates this point.

After the Second World War, the predominantly male unionized bartenders mobilized to drive women, who had entered bartending during the war, from the trade. Most of the white women unionists, who had in fact fought men for the right to serve liquor (previously a male preserve), did not mobilize to hold onto bartending work. But three hundred black women bartenders in Chicago launched a strong protest. Their all-black union local leadership conceded to the women, continuing to dispatch women bartenders from the hiring hall. In 1961, however, when a city ordinance banning women from bartending was finally enforced, 400 women lost their jobs. The male-dominated local (as well as the international) refused to help, so the barmaids turned to the community for support and picketed city hall. Black community newspapers ran stories sympathetic to the women; however, the ordinance was allowed to stand.8

Black women and white women workers pursued different strategies because discrimination in the food service industry limited black women’s access to higher paid employment as waitresses at the same time that industry growth was expanding white waitresses’ opportunities. Black women, although faced with opposition from black men, also had more space to assert their own “breadwinner” claims since their right to living-wage work was more supported in the black community. Where white waitresses found their main support for their identities as craft workers inside the union and the trade-union movement, black women belonged to a racially oppressed community which generated its own oppositional organizations, including black newspapers. Perhaps because the women bartenders’ struggle focused more on the white-dominated city council than their own black union local, it was easier for the women to win community support. Although many white waitresses were also single mothers, they did not have the same sorts of community institutions to turn to and so were under more pressure to come to terms with the men in their union.

Thus, the different sources of group support for women both at and outside of work shaped the ways in which they developed gendered work identities and structured the risks they faced and the resources they had available to contest with men about what was and was not gender-appropriate work for women. White women had stronger ties to the union, fewer resources outside it than black women, and, perhaps most important, far less economic need than black women had to challenge men’s attempts to define bartending as inappropriate work for women.

Politics of Struggle and Discourses of Gender

Discourses of gender were always entailed in trade union struggles, as workers sought to justify their demands to each other, to a general public, and to potential allies in the middle class. Strategies of self-representation are political choices, sometimes self-conscious, sometimes unreflective, but always choices. Differing modes of making a case are always available. How male trade unionists represented themselves or women workers shifted depending on how necessary they thought it was to appease middle-class allies and how pressured they were by their female colleagues who had a different vision of how they wished to be spoken of and seen.

For example, throughout the late nineteenth century and into the 1920s, the majority of the female factory labor force remained young and single. Male trade unionists and middle class reformers, male and female, attempted to win support for striking women workers by drawing on anxieties about young women’s sexuality, an intense focus of public discourse in the period. Trying to picture factory girls as sympathetic victims, these discourses emphasized the differences between working men and women by defining women’s low wages as a problem of sexual victimization (the cause of the working girl’s “fall” into prostitution). When working women could make their voices heard, they strongly objected to this line of defense, rejecting its patronizing tone and advancing very different images. Shifting attention away from the issue of their virtue, young women strikers asserted their similarity with men, appealing for support on the ground of their breadwinner roles, their reliance on wage-earning to support themselves and their families.9

The process of choosing organizing strategies is both conscious and unconscious. Men and women’s individual identities as workers are created, then reproduced and solidified, in daily life in informal workgroups and formal workers’ organizations, producing deep commitments to ways of understanding oneself and feelings about others. Defining the boundaries of “us” and “them” is part of everyday resistance to managerial authority on the job and certainly crucial to all kinds of confrontational challenges to management. While necessary for protection, group boundaries have their own rigidities and defensive sides.

The passionate feelings that leak through the minutes of both nineteenth and twentieth century union meetings where the employment of women was discussed demonstrate that craftsmen experienced lower-waged women’s entry into their workplaces as an attack on their masculinity, their sexual and social selves. The economic threat that lower-paid women workers represented was certainly real. But much more than wage levels was at stake. Women’s presence also threatened the practices, feelings, and relationships through which men had constructed a culture of solidarity within their organizations.

Solidarity involves defining and maintaining group loyalties to defend against the threat of both real and imagined betrayals. Organizing against a powerful (and seductive) enemy can be frightening. Gender difference (the obsessive demarcation of masculinity) could be, and often was, mobilized to manage these anxieties. But a defensive masculinity was only one strategy, and not the only one possible. Where the turn of the century Cigar Makers’ Industrial Union (CMIU) pursued exclusionary strategies and very reluctantly organized women workers into a separate and secondary section of the union, male Cuban emigres in Tampa’s cigar industry, radicalized by the struggle for independence, rejected craft organization in favor of an anarcho-syndicalist union, La Resistencia, which sought to organize all workers throughout the city. Prominent among them were women tobacco strippers who represented over one-quarter of Resistencia’s membership. Attacked as both un-American and unmanly by the CMIU, the male leadership of La Resistencia characterized the CMIU as “a barn of white livered dung hill cocks,” proclaiming themselves “the voice of virile labor.”10 In the context of a politicized community and an industry where men and women labored in the same factories and received equal pay for the same work (although men tended to monopolize the most highly paid jobs), strategic choices required working men to redefine the boundaries of gendered work and the meaning of masculinity.

Periods of labor radicalism and mass struggles were the most hospitable environment for challenges to hegemonic cultural constructions of gender. The movements’ radically democratic ideology encouraged claims for gender equality and respect for women as partners, not subordinates. The actual organizing and solidarity of workers in conflict with employers encouraged women workers to organize and encouraged working-class men to support them. Organized feminism, while predominantly middle-class in membership, helped working-class women to develop the language and political resources to articulate demands for political and economic equality within their trade unions and communities. (The contrast between the 1930s and earlier moments of widespread class mobilization is especially striking along these lines.)11

In the nineteenth century, when labor radicalism was tied to a broader political movement and goals of revolutionary change such as the vision of cooperative commonwealth at the heart of Owenite socialism in England in the l830s and the Knights of Labor in the United States in the l880s, women could be full members of organizations, participating not only as workers but as members of working-class communities. This was especially important because women were a numerical minority in the paid workforce. Insofar as women were included, there was at least a potential base of support for feminist ideas. At the height of their militance, and responding to pressure from women delegates (mostly textile operatives and shoe workers), the Knights’ national convention endorsed woman suffrage in 1886.12

Greenwald’s comparative study of conflicts over women’s entry into male jobs during the First World War suggests how men’s strategic choices were affected by generalized class struggle and middle-class feminist alliances with working-class organizations. In Kansas City, a city-wide and week-long general strike in support of striking men and women laundry workers preceded the introduction of women as conductors on the streetcars. A strong branch of the Women’s Trade Union League (WTUL) had cooperated with the union movement around the laundry strike, proving their reliability as working-class allies. When the streetcar company sought to hire women as conductors for lower pay, the Amalgamated Transit Union went out on strike, with newly hired women, demanding equal pay for equal work. Their strike won the support of the Kansas City labor movement and the WTUL. In Cleveland and Detroit, by contrast, the male dominated unions struck against the employment of women.13

The conditions that encouraged challenge to gender norms were not part of everyday life and organizing. Radical movements’ defeat brought demoralization about the possibilities of broad-based challenges to capital, encouraging better-placed workers to fall back onto more narrow, sectorial forms of trade union organizing, and prompting others to seek more privatistic routes to economic survival.

Implications for the Present

Today the lines of conflict and solidarity between men and women workers have shifted in profound ways. The question of women’s place in trade unions, of women’s ability to labor and to lead, is, if certainly not settled, no longer the fundamental axis of gender relations. Forty percent of all trade union members are women, and their representation within leadership, especially in unions with large numbers of women, is growing significantly.14 With feminism as a strong current in the trade unions, women workers have organized for new bargaining issues like comparable worth, family leave, sexual harassment policies, and to redefine the scope of trade union politics, forcing their unions to take positions on abortion rights and lesbian and gay rights.

Unfortunately, these gains are outweighed by the sustained corporate assault against all workers’ wages and working conditions. The unionized portion of the labor force is at its lowest point in fifty years, mainly because men’s rates of unionization have fallen dramatically. Unions are on the defensive economically and politically. As various forces search for strategic counter-offensives, the drumbeat against “special interests” and “identity politics” has become very loud, expanding well beyond the right and the center. There is, of course, something real here: working people’s distress and the concentration of wealth have become too great to ignore. However, this particular rediscovery of workers as a forgotten middle has counterposed “identity” to class politics, even holding the left responsible for the current weakness of progressive forces.15

Here, I think, is the new “fault line” of gender (and racial) conflict, posing the question of whether working-class institutions of struggle will adopt inclusive political strategies. Tragic losses suffered by blue-collar men threaten to overshadow, politically, the double day, the low wages, and the job insecurity faced by many working women. Broad political support for Clinton’s assault on single mothers in the name of welfare reform reflects deep divisions within the working class between employed workers and chronically unemployed and underemployed workers, between married women with children and single mothers.

The history I have outlined demonstrates that how trade unions will respond to the employers’ offensive depends, at least in part, on the political self-organization of marginalized groups. Declining male wages in the context of a hyper-competitive labor market, pervasive economic insecurity, and disappearing public services have destabilized the old gender order, but not in ways that clearly improve the lives of working-class women and men. Whether men will respond in a defensive reassertion of their lost male privilege depends on whether women will have the political resources to challenge men, forcing them to redefine masculinity in more egalitarian terms. In turn, how women come to define their own gendered interests depends on whether men and women together will opt for more collective rather than individualistic solutions to current dilemmas. Counterposing “identity” to “class” politics, therefore, is absolutely mistaken. Rather, as many movement activists and trade unionists are already doing, we have to build a coalition politics through struggles that creatively address (instead of wishfully disregarding) divisions within the working class and support (rather than undermine) the efforts of oppressed people to represent themselves, their interests, and their needs.


  1. Mary H. Blewett, Men, Women and Work: Class, Gender, and Protest in the New England Shoe Industry, 1780-1910 (Chicago: University of Illinois Press, 1988), Ch. 8, esp. pp. 242-249.
  2. Dorothy Sue Cobble, Dishing It Out: Waitresses and Their Unions in the Twentieth Century (Chicago: University of Illinois Press, 1991), pp. 192-200.
  3. Ardis Camerion, “Bread & Roses revisted: Women’s culture and working-class activism in the Lawrence strike of 1912,” in Women, Work & Protest, ed. Ruth Milkman (Boston: Routledge, 1985); Karen Brodkin Sacks, Organizing at Duke Medical Center (Chicago: University of Illinois Press, 1988), Ch. 5.
  4. Elizabeth Faue, Community of Suffering and Struggle (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1991), Ch. 5; Carol Turbin, Working Women of Collar City (Chicago: University of Illinois Press, 1992), Ch. 3.
  5. Eileen Boris, “’A Man’s Dwelling House Is His Castle’: Tenement House Cigar Making and the Judicial Imperative,” Work Engendered, ed. Ava Baron, p. 139.
  6. Mary H. Blewett, Men, Women & Work, pp. 123-133.
  7. Ruth Milkman, Gender at Work: The Dynamics of Job Segregation by Sex during World War II (Chicago: University of Illinois, 1987), p. 145.
  8. Cobble, Dishing It Out, Ch. 7.
  9. Mary H. Blewett, Men, Women & Work, 284-5; Jacquelyn Dowd Hall, “Private Eyes, Public Women: Images of Class and Sex in the Urban South, Atlanta, Georgia, 1913-1915,” in Work Engendered, pp. 260-269.
  10. Patricia A. Cooper, Once A Cigar Maker: Men, Women and Work Culture in American Cigar Factories, 1900-1919 (Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1987), esp. 114-117, 151-152; Nancy A. Hewitt, “’The Voice of Virile Labor’: Labor Militancy, Community Solidarity, and Gender Identity among Tampa’s Latin Workers, 1880-1930,” in Work Engendered, ed. Ava Baron, pp. 142-167.
  11. For a fuller discussion of this point, see Johanna Brenner & Barbara Laslett, “Gender, Social Reproduction, and Women’s Self-Organization: Considering the U.S. Welfare State,” Gender & Society 5 (1991), esp. pp. 323-327.
  12. Susan Levine, Labor’s True Woman: Carpet Weavers, Industrialization, and Labor Reform in the Gilded Age (Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1984), Ch. 5.
  13. Maurine Weiner Greenwald, Women, War, and Work: The Impact of World War I on Women Workers in the United States (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1990), Ch. 4, esp. pp. l72-l80.
  14. Cynthia Costello and Barbara Kivimae Krimgold, eds., The American Woman, 1996-97 (New York: W. W. Norton, 19960, p. 69.
  15. See, for example, Richard Rorty, Achieving Our Country: Leftist Thought in Twentieth Century America (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1998), and Todd Gitlin, The Twilight of Common Dreams (New York: Metropolitan, 1995).