Ready-to-Wear and Ready-to-Work: A Century of Industry and Immigrants in Paris and New York

Front Cover
Duke University Press, Jan 16, 1997 - Business & Economics - 426 pages
0 Reviews
Nancy L. Green offers a critical and lively look at New York’s Seventh Avenue and the Parisian Sentier in this first comparative study of the two historical centers of the women’s garment industry. Torn between mass production and "art," this industry is one of the few manufactauring sectors left in the service-centered cities of today. Ready-to-Wear and Ready-to-Work tells the story of urban growth, the politics of labor, and the relationships among the many immigrant groups who have come to work the sewing machines over the last century.
Green focuses on issues of fashion and fabrication as they involve both the production and consumption of clothing. Traditionally, much of the urban garment industry has been organized around small workshops and flexible homework, and Green emphasizes the effect this labor organization had on the men and mostly women who have sewn the garments. Whether considering the immigrant Jews, Italians, Puerto Ricans, Dominicans, and Chinese in New York or the Chinese-Cambodians, Turks, Armenians, and Russian, Polish, and Tunisian Jews in Paris, she outlines similarities of social experience in the shops and the unions, while allowing the voices of the workers, in all their diversity to be heard.
A provocative examination of gender and ethnicity, historical conflict and consensus, and notions of class and cultural difference, Ready-to-Wear and Ready-to-Work breaks new ground in the methodology of comparative history.
 

What people are saying - Write a review

We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.

Contents

FASHION AND FLEXIBILITY The Garment Industry between Haute Couture and Jeans
15
SEVENTH AVENUE
44
THE SENTIER
74
BERMUDA SHORTS IN COMPARATIVE PERSPECTIVE
105
THE SOCIAL CONSEQUENCES OF FLEXIBILITY
136
THE SWEATSHOP AS WORKPLACE AND METAPHOR
137
WOMEN IMMIGRANTS AND SKILL IN THE GARMENT SHOPS
161
AN INDUSTRY OF PASSAGE The Immigrant Waves
188
CONFLICT AND CONSENSUS ON SEVENTH AVENUE
219
ECONOMIC AND ETHNIC IDENTITIES IN THE PARISIAN PATCHWORK
251
CONCLUSION
280
NOTES
293
BIBLIOGRAPHY
379
INDEX
411
Copyright

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

References to this book

All Book Search results »

About the author (1997)

\

Nancy L. Green is Professor of History at the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales.

Bibliographic information