Catalogue


From coveralls to zoot suits : the lives of Mexican American women on the World War II home front /
Elizabeth R. Escobedo.
imprint
Chapel Hill : University of North Carolina Press, c2013.
description
xv, 229 p. : ill. ; 25 cm.
ISBN
1469602059 (cloth : alk. paper), 9781469602059 (cloth : alk. paper)
format(s)
Book
Holdings
More Details
imprint
Chapel Hill : University of North Carolina Press, c2013.
isbn
1469602059 (cloth : alk. paper)
9781469602059 (cloth : alk. paper)
contents note
The Pachuca panic -- Americanos todos : Mexican Women and the wartime state and media -- Reenvisioning Rosie : Mexican Women and wartime defense work -- Respectable rebellions : Mexican women and the world of wartime leisure -- Rights and postwar life.
catalogue key
8876249
 
Includes bibliographical references (p. [197]-213) and index.
A Look Inside
Excerpts
Flap Copy
During World War II, unprecedented employment avenues opened up for women and minorities in U.S. defense industries at the same time that massive population shifts and the war challenged Americans to rethink notions of race. At this extraordinary historical moment, Mexican American women found new means to exercise control over their lives in the home, workplace, and nation. In From Coveralls to Zoot Suits, Elizabeth R. Escobedo explores how, as war workers and volunteers, dance hostesses and zoot suiters, respectable young ladies and rebellious daughters, these young women used wartime conditions to serve the United States in its time of need and to pursue their own desires.
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Choice on 2013-08-01:
Escobedo (Univ. of Denver) has published a superbly researched and written book on Mexican American women during and after WW II. She draws heavily on oral histories and archival documents, and her use of photographs from the Los Angeles Public Library makes for an attractive presentation. Especially strong is her critique of media stereotypes of young Mexican American women. The integration of statistical data adds to her narrative, and, unlike many other scholars, she does not drown in her thesis of how the war transformed women. This is also true of her balanced treatment of the Pachuca, which complements her stories of how well-paying jobs offered opportunities. Despite these strengths, there are epistemological problems. Like many of the younger generation of scholars, Escobedo does not know the complexities of wartime Los Angeles and makes assumptions based on other scholars who know less about the city. For instance, the Sleepy Lagoon incident started in South Central Los Angeles, and Escobedo makes only one reference to the area. Although discrimination was widespread, there were also class differences, often determined by whether a person went to a parochial or a public school. An inclusion of Los Angeles as a place would have added to the narrative. Summing Up: Highly recommended. All levels/libraries. R. Acuna emeritus, California State University, Northridge
Reviews
Review Quotes
"A superbly researched and written book. . . . [Escobedo] draws heavily on oral histories and archival documents, and her use of photographs from the Los Angeles Public Library makes for an attractive presentation. . . . Highly recommended. All levels/libraries." - Choice
"Drawing on an impressive range of archival sources, oral narratives, and historiography, Elizabeth Escobedo draws you into the social worlds of young Mexican American women, especially those who were Rosie the Riveters by day and pachucas by night. Intelligent and captivating, this superb study significantly advances our understanding of Mexican American women during and after World War II."--Vicki L. Ruiz, University of California, Irvine
This item was reviewed in:
Choice, August 2013
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Summaries
Main Description
During World War II, unprecedented employment avenues opened up for women and minorities in U.S. defense industries at the same time that massive population shifts and the war challenged Americans to rethink notions of race. At this extraordinary historical moment, Mexican American women found new means to exercise control over their lives in the home, workplace, and nation. In From Coveralls to Zoot Suits , Elizabeth R. Escobedo explores how, as war workers and volunteers, dance hostesses and zoot suiters, respectable young ladies and rebellious daughters, these young women used wartime conditions to serve the United States in its time of need and to pursue their own desires. But even after the war, as Escobedo shows, Mexican American women had to continue challenging workplace inequities and confronting family and communal resistance to their broadening public presence. Highlighting seldom heard voices of the "Greatest Generation," Escobedo examines these contradictions within Mexican families and their communities, exploring the impact of youth culture, outside employment, and family relations on the lives of women whose home-front experiences and everyday life choices would fundamentally alter the history of a generation.

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