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The Wages of Whiteness: Race and the Making of the American Working Class [Anglais] [Broché]

David R. Roediger , Kathleen Cleaver , Mike Davis , Michael Sprinker

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Descriptions du produit

Revue de presse

“At last an American labor historian realizes that white workers have a racial identity that matters as race matters to workers who are not white.”—Nell Irwin Painter, Princeton University

“A timely and important intervention in the current debates over ‘race’ and ethnicity.”—Catherine Hall, New Left Review

“Roediger’s exciting new book makes us understand what it means to see oneself as white in a new way. An extremely important and insightful book.”—Lawrence Glickman, The Nation

“The Celestine Prophecy of whiteness studies.”—SPLN

Présentation de l'éditeur

Combining classical Marxism, psychoanalysis, and the new labor history pioneered by E. P. Thompson and Herbert Gutman, David Roediger’s widely acclaimed book provides an original study of the formative years of working-class racism in the United States. This, he argues, cannot be explained simply with reference to economic advantage; rather, white working-class racism is underpinned by a complex series of psychological and ideological mechanisms that reinforce racial stereotypes, and thus help to forge the identities of white workers in opposition to Blacks.

In a new preface, Roediger reflects on the reception, influence, and critical response to The Wages of Whiteness, while Kathleen Cleaver’s insightful introduction hails the importance of a work that has become a classic.

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Amazon.com: 2.7 étoiles sur 5  10 commentaires
110 internautes sur 122 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 A Working Definition of Race 29 juin 2000
Par bradley - Publié sur Amazon.com
David Roediger examines the growth and social construction of racism as it was related to the working classes of the ninteenth century. His scholarship earned him the Organization of American Historians Merle Curti Prize for US Social History in 1991. This work is brief, but dense in analysis, argument and scholarly interpretations.
The book basically explores how white workers (with an emphasis on Irish Americans) sought after a "wage" for their color, by placing on Black Americans the mantle of "other", objectifying and stratifying blacks into an object of prejudice and discrimination.
After a lengthy discussion of the historiography of labor and race issues, Roediger writes eloquently of the cultural formation of words such as slave, servant, hired hand, freeman, white slave, master and boss. All of which, he argues, were used to diferentiate between blacks and white laborers. He is careful to point out that it was the workers themselves who created the terms as a means to divide the races and elevate whites on the hierarchy of social status. It is a convincing arguement. The text concludes with an enlightening discussion of "black face" and the social struggles of the Irish, whom many felt in the majority viewed as "white negroes."
This book is scholarly and a read that demands one's attention.
76 internautes sur 87 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 An excellent study of the social concept of race. 3 mars 1999
Par Un client - Publié sur Amazon.com
This book tackles the difficult subject of race relations among the working class of America. The time frame for this book is generally fom 1800 through the Civil war, as America was turning from an agricultural society to an industrial society. Slavery was drawing to a close, immigration had increased, and the urban populations of American cities were growing. All of these elements combined to create an urban working class complete with racial tension. Within this context, David R. Roediger defines the attitudes of race and race relation in a manner that is unique to most histories of urban studies. He not only records the developments of a racial identity, but he also examines the reasons why the white community defined itself as well as how the white community defined other groups. This book will probably stir a lot of controversy, but it will also answer many questions. Any historian or urban studies major can benefit form this book, but beyond college level readers, anyone interested in racial identities and racial differences can also appriciate this book.
20 internautes sur 22 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 A Necessary Read for all American Historians 27 décembre 2008
Par rusty - Publié sur Amazon.com
Let it be said from the outset that Roediger is an American Labor Historian, and although this is a book about race, it is also a book about the way class and race are so intertwined. I think it is somewhat amusing that so many people find Roediger racist against whites, I don't think he is: he is more interested in the way race and class became nearly unified concepts in the formation of the American Working Class during the nineteenth century. As Roediger points out, Working class became in many ways, white working class: which is no suprise considering that most works of labor history before the 1960s (and even most afterwards) concerned themselves only with white men. This of course leads to a minor fault in his work: gender is not fully considered (but at 180 pages, this is understandable). Dana Frank's "Purchasing Power" would be a good work to get a small glimpse of that peice of the puzzle.

Overall, a great work of historical scholarship that should be read by every serious historian.
3 internautes sur 4 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 An Interesting Study on Race and the American Working Class 17 octobre 2012
Par Lionel S. Taylor - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché|Achat vérifié
This book looks at the very interesting question of why the American labor movement did not embrace the cause of Black emancipation and civil right. On the surface it would seem that the two wold have enough in common to share a common cause. Not so argues Roedinger. In fact he argues that the emerging industrial worker of the mid to late 19th century who was low skilled and often times a recent immigrant from Ireland or Germany had an even more powerful interest in distancing themselves from the degradation that was associated with Blacks and the jobs that they performed. While this wold seem counter intuitive, Roediger argues that many unskilled white workers gained a type of social legitimacy from separating themselves from non-white labor and gaining for themselves the status of being seen as White American workers. While the beginning of the book is a little dense as the author tries to tease out the changing meaning of different terms for labor and racial categories in the pre and post Civil War period, this only sets the stage for more concrete example in the second half when he examines the experiences of Irish immigrant laborers in the later chapters. This is and interesting book in that it examines race from the perspective of what it means to be White and the social implications of that. It reminds the reader that the social categorization of race is dependent on opposition and that this opposition is in no way a natural or concrete boundary but rather a a dynamic social construct that all Americans should be aware of.
3 internautes sur 16 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
1.0 étoiles sur 5 Marxist Historiography Is Dead 29 novembre 2013
Par Winston - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché|Achat vérifié
Oh, please! I can understand why college professors assign this book. It is important to understand why historiography moves through phases. This is definitely one of the phases that has come and gone. As a result, this book serves only as an example of how NOT to write historical analysis.

Roediger's treatment of racial history is an overly simplistic portrayal of American societal evolution after emancipation. His reductionist approach to surveying racial angst is a name-dropping festival. This book left me feeling as though Roediger did little work to speak with his own voice. The profligate name-dropping (fifteen names in one paragraph alone) left me wondering if Roediger has an opinion of his own or, rather, prefers to hide behind the opinions of others. Of reductionist history –if any historical trend, act or agency does not fit inside his narrow Marxist interpretation then he either simply ignores it or grossly misinterprets information to match his politically predisposed conclusions.

Overall, this book seems to serve as a platform to advertise Roediger's trademark Marxist historical idiom. Marxist historiography is dead. This book demonstrates why this is so.

To any history professors reading this review: this book is best served to your classes in excerpted form. I encourage you not to anger your students with the bother and expense of buying this book, and then requiring them to read it. Could discord enhance your class discussion? Perhaps. However, if it were like the discussion in my graduate class, you would spend more time tearing this work apart than discussing its paltry merits. Of the merits: the introduction, only seven pages penned by Kathleen Cleaver, presented the lion's share of insightful information.
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