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  1. Inventing the Immigration Problem - The Dillingham Commission and Its Legacy

    Inventing the Immigration Problem - The Dillingham Commission and Its Legacy

    $30.00

    In 1907 the U.S. Congress created a joint commission to investigate what many Americans saw as a national crisis: an unprecedented number of immigrants flowing into the United States. Experts―women and men trained in the new field of social science―fanned out across the country to collect data on these fresh arrivals. The trove of information they amassed shaped how Americans thought about immigrants, themselves, and the nation’s place in the world. Katherine Benton-Cohen argues that the Dillingham Commission’s legacy continues to inform the ways that U.S. policy addresses questions raised by immigration, over a century later. Within a decade of its launch, almost all of the commission’s recommendations―including a literacy test, a quota system based on national origin, the continuation of Asian exclusion, and greater federal oversight of immigration policy―were implemented into law. Inventing the Immigration Problem describes the labyrinthine bureaucracy, broad administrative authority, and quantitative record-keeping that followed in the wake of these regulations. Their implementation marks a final turn away from an immigration policy motivated by executive-branch concerns over foreign policy and toward one dictated by domestic labor politics. The Dillingham Commission―which remains the largest immigration study ever conducted in the United States―reflects its particular moment in time when mass immigration, the birth of modern social science, and an aggressive foreign policy fostered a newly robust and optimistic notion of federal power. Its quintessentially Progressive formulation of America’s immigration problem, and its recommendations, endure today in almost every component of immigration policy, control, and enforcement. Learn More
  2. Borderline Americans - Racial Division and Labor War in the Arizona Borderlands

    Borderline Americans - Racial Division and Labor War in the Arizona Borderlands

    $23.00

    “Are you an American, or are you not?” This was the question Harry Wheeler, sheriff of Cochise County, Arizona, used to choose his targets in one of the most remarkable vigilante actions ever carried out on U.S. soil. And this is the question at the heart of Katherine Benton-Cohen’s provocative history, which ties that seemingly remote corner of the country to one of America’s central concerns: the historical creation of racial boundaries. It was in Cochise County that the Earps and Clantons fought, Geronimo surrendered, and Wheeler led the infamous Bisbee Deportation, and it is where private militias patrol for undocumented migrants today. These dramatic events animate the rich story of the Arizona borderlands, where people of nearly every nationality—drawn by “free” land or by jobs in the copper mines—grappled with questions of race and national identity. Benton-Cohen explores the daily lives and shifting racial boundaries between groups as disparate as Apache resistance fighters, Chinese merchants, Mexican-American homesteaders, Midwestern dry farmers, Mormon polygamists, Serbian miners, New York mine managers, and Anglo women reformers. Racial categories once blurry grew sharper as industrial mining dominated the region. Ideas about home, family, work and wages, manhood and womanhood all shaped how people thought about race. Mexicans were legally white, but were they suitable marriage partners for “Americans”? Why were Italian miners described as living “as no white man can”? By showing the multiple possibilities for racial meanings in America, Benton-Cohen’s insightful and informative work challenges our assumptions about race and national identity. Learn More
  3. Against Capitalism

    Against Capitalism

    $10.00

    Capitalism is hegemonic today not because it is the best we fallible humans can do but because it supports, and is supported by, special interests of immense power. This book argues that Economic Democracy, a competitive economy of democratically run enterprises that replaces capitalist financial markets with more suitable institutions, will be more efficient than capitalism, more rational in its growth, more democratic, more egalitarian, and less alienating.Against Capitalism is an ambitious book, drawing on philosophical analysis, economic theory, and considerable empirical evidence to advance its controversial thesis. It examines both conservative and liberal forms of capitalism; it compares Economic Democracy to other models of socialism; and it considers the transition to Economic Democracy from advanced capitalist societies, from economies built on the Soviet model, and from conditions of underdevelopment. The book concludes with some unconventional reflections on historical materialism, ideal communism, and the future of Marxism. Learn More
  4. A Hubert Harrison Reader

    A Hubert Harrison Reader

    $20.00

    The brilliant writer, orator, educator, critic, and activist Hubert Harrison (1883 - 1927) is one of the truly important, yet neglected, figures of early twentieth-century America. Known as "the father of Harlem radicalism,' and a leading Socialist party speaker who advocated that socialists champion the cause of the Negro as a revolutionary doctrine, Harrison had an important influence on a generation of race and class radicals, including Marcus Garvey and A. Philip Randolph. Harrison envisioned a socialism that had special appeal to African-Americans, and he affirmed the duty of socialists to oppose race-based oppression. Despite high praise from his contemporaries, Harrison's legacy has largely been neglected. This reader redresses the imbalance; Harrison's essays, editorials, reviews, letters, and diary entries offer a profound, and often unique, analysis of issues, events and individuals of early twentieth-century America. His writings also provide critical insights and counterpoints to the thinking of W. E. B. DuBois, Booker T. Washington and Marcus Garvey. The reader is organized thematically to highlight Harrison's contributions to the debates on race, class, culture, and politics of his time. The writings span Harrison's career and the evolution of his thought, and include extensive political writings, editorials, meditations, reviews of theater and poetry, and deeply evocative social commentary. Learn More
  5. A Distant Heritage

    A Distant Heritage

    $10.00

    Historians often rely on a handful of unusual cases to illustrate the absence of free speech in the colonies—such as that of Richard Barnes, who had his arms broken and a hole bored through his tongue for seditious words against the governor of Virginia. In this definitive and accessible work, Larry Eldridge convincingly debunks this view by revealing surprising evidence of free speech in early America. Using the court records of every American colony that existed before 1700 and an analysis of over 1,200 seditious speech cases sifted from those records, A Distant Heritage shows how colonists experienced a dramatic expansion during the seventeenth century of their freedom to criticize government and its officials. Exploring important changes in the roles of juries and appeals, the nature of prosecution and punishment, and the pattern of growing leniency, Eldridge also shows us why this expansion occurred when it did. He concludes that the ironic combination of tumult and destabilization on the one hand, and steady growth and development on the other, made colonists more willing to criticize authority openly and officials less able to prevent it. That, in turn, established a foundation for the more celebrated flowering of colonial dissent against English authority in the eighteenth century. Steeped in primary sources and richly narrated, this is an invaluable addition to the library of anyone interested in legal history, colonial America, or the birth of free speech in the United States. Learn More
  6. A Celebration of Work

    A Celebration of Work

    $12.00

    “Nothing is better for a person than to have an opportunity to do meaningful work," says Norman Best in this memoir detailing his forty-eight years as a blue-collar worker. During those years, he built and maintained highways and bridges in Idaho, Washington, Oregon, and Montana, and served stints as a machinist in the San Francisco shipyards and as business agent for Local 86 of the International Association of Machinists. In A Celebration of Work he shows how the construction of rural roads, railroad bridges, and modern superhighways depended on the expertise of skilled workers who cared deeply about quality. Yet the work of private contractors, interested solely in profit, was often careless and dangerous. Best's concern for the worker led him to the Communist Party in the 1930s, but, disillusioned with the party's leadership, he left it in 1946. His philosophy of economic democracy, rooted in Jeffersonian democracy, Marxian socialism, and the Golden Rule, renders his voice unique. Whether Best is describing organizing a union, busting the highway construction contract system, or refusing to cooperate with the FBI, his memoir honors the art of laboring with pride, self-confidence, and dignity. Learn More
  7. IWW Literature Bundle

    IWW Literature Bundle

    $25.00

    A bundle of 6 works about the Industrial Workers of the World, including: -The Industrial Workers of the World: Its First 100 Years -One Big Union -The Union on our Own Terms -Think It Over -The Little Red Song Book - 38th Edition -The most recent edition of the quarterly Industrial Worker magazine Purchased individually, these items would add up to $31 Learn More
  8. Frank Little Shirt

    Frank Little Shirt

    $20.00

    Frank H. Little joined the Industrial Workers of the World in 1905, organizing miners, lumberjacks, and oil field workers. He was lynched in Butte, Montana, for his union and anti-war activities. This t shirt commemorates the 100 year anniversary of his death. 100% cotton, union made and printed. Learn More
  9. Prison Industrial Complex For Beginners

    Prison Industrial Complex For Beginners

    $15.95

    Prison Industrial Complex For Beginners is a graphic narrative project that attempts to distill the fundamental components of what scholars, activists, and artists have identified as the Mass Incarceration movement in the United States. Since the early 1990s, activist critics of the US prison system have marked its emergence as a “complex” in a manner comparable to how President Eisenhower described the Military Industrial Complex. Like its institutional “cousin,” the Prison Industrial Complex features a critical combination of political ideology, far-reaching federal policy, and the neo-liberal directive to privatize institutions traditionally within the purview of the government. The result is that corporations have capital incentives to capture and contain human bodies. The Prison Industrial Complex relies on the “law and order” ideology fomented by President Nixon and developed at least partially in response to the unrest generated through the Civil Rights Movement. It is (and has been) enhanced and emboldened via the US “war on drugs,” a slate of policies that by any account have failed to do anything except normalize the warehousing of nonviolent substance abusers in jails and prisons that serve more as criminal training centers then as redemptive spaces for citizens who might re-enter society successfully. Prison Industrial Complex For Beginners is a primer for how these issues emerged and how our awareness of the systems at work in mass incarceration might be the very first step in reforming an institution responsible for some of our most egregious contemporary civil rights violations. Learn More
  10. On Our Way to Oyster Bay - Mother Jones and Her March for Children's Rights

    On Our Way to Oyster Bay - Mother Jones and Her March for Children's Rights

    $17.95

    Though eight-year-old Aidan and his friend Gussie want to go to school, like many other children in 1903, they work twelve hours, six days a week, at a cotton mill in Pennsylvania instead. So when the millworkers decide to go on strike, the two friends join the picket line. Maybe now life will change for them. But when a famous labor reformer named Mother Jones comes to hear of the millworkers' demands, she tells them they need to do more than just strike. “Troubled by all she had seen, Mother Jones wanted to end child labor. But what could she do? Why, organize a children's march and bring the message right to President Theodore Roosevelt at his summer home in Oyster Bay, of course!” Written by Monica Kulling, with vibrant illustrations by Felicita Sala, this picture book uses an entertaining story about fictitious characters to bring a real event in history to vivid life. The actual march raised awareness across North America and contributed to the passage of the first child labor laws. It offers an excellent model for how ordinary people, including children, can make a difference by standing up for what's right. For lesson planning, there's more about Mother Jones, the march and child labor laws at the end of the book. There's also information about child labor today and concrete suggestions for getting involved and helping, making this book perfect for discussions about social justice, activism and citizenship. Learn More

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