1st Edition

The Ashgate Companion to the History of Textile Workers, 1650–2000

Edited By Lex Heerma van Voss, Els Hiemstra-Kuperus Copyright 2010

    This impressive collection offers the first systematic global and comparative history of textile workers over the course of 350 years. This period covers the major changes in wool and cotton production, and the global picture from pre-industrial times through to the twentieth century. After an introduction, the first part of the book is divided into twenty national studies on textile production over the period 1650-2000. To make them useful tools for international comparisons, each national overview is based on a consistent framework that defines the topics and issues to be treated in each chapter. The countries described have been selected to included the major historic producers of woollen and cotton fabrics, and the diversity of global experience, and include not only European nations, but also Argentina, Brazil, China, Egypt, India, Japan, Mexico, Turkey, Uruguay and the USA. The second part of the book consists of ten comparative papers on topics including globalization and trade, organization of production, space, identity, workplace, institutions, production relations, gender, ethnicity and the textile firm. These are based on the national overviews and additional literature, and will help apply current interdisciplinary and cultural concerns to a subject traditionally viewed largely through a social and economic history lens. Whilst offering a unique reference source for anyone interested in the history of a particular country's textile industry, the true strength of this project lies in its capacity of international comparison. By providing global comparative studies of key textile industries and workers, both geographically and thematically, this book provides a comprehensive and contemporary analysis of a major element of the world's economy. This allows historians to challenge many of the received ideas about globalization, for instance, highlighting how global competition for lower production costs is by no means a uniquely modern issue, and has b

    Contents: Textile workers around the world, 1650-2000: introduction to a collective work project, Els Hiemstra-Kuperus, Lex Heerma van Voss and Elise van Nederveen Meerkerk; Part I National Histories of Textile Workers: Textile production in Argentina, 1650-2000, Mirta Zaida Lobato; Austria and Czechoslovakia: the Habsburg monarchy and its successor states, Andrea Komlosy; Brazil: the origin of the textile industry, Roberta Marx Delson; China, Robert Cliver; Denmark: the textile industry and the formation of modern industrial relations, Lars K. Christensen; Egyptian textile workers: from craft artisans facing European competition to proletarians contending with the state, Joel Beinin; The German wool and cotton industry from the 16th to the 20th century, Dietrich Ebeling, Marcel Boldorf, Stefan Gorißen, Michael Mende, Anke Sczesny and Michaela Schmölz- Häberlein; Great Britain: textile workers in the Lancashire cotton and Yorkshire wool industries, Alan Fowler; The long globalization and textile producers in India, Tirthankar Roy; The Italian textile industry, 1600-2000: labour, sectors and products, Giovanni Luigi Fontana, Walter Panciera and Giorgio Riello; Japan, Janet Hunter and Helen Macnaughtan; Mexican textile workers: from conquest to globalization, Jeffrey Bortz; The Netherlands, Elise van Nederveen Meerkerk, Lex Heerma van Voss and Els Hiemstra-Kuperus; Poland, Piotr Franaszek; The cotton textile industry in Russia and the Soviet Union, Dave Pretty; Spain, Angel Smith, Carles Enrech, Carme Molinero and Pere Ysàs; The Ottoman empire, 1650-1922, Donald Quataert; Turkey, 1922-2003, Lisa A. Seidman; The evolution of the Uruguayan textile industry, María Magdalena Camou and Silvana Maubrigades; USA: shifting landscapes of class, culture, gender, race, and protest in the American Northeast and South, Mary H. Blewett. Part II International Comparisons: Global trade and textile workers, Prasannan Parthasarathi; Proto-industrialization and industrial


    Lex Heerma van Voss is a research fellow at the International Institute of Social History in Amsterdam and holds a chair in the history of labour and labour relations at Utrecht University. He has published on the comparative history of dockworkers and on the history of the North Sea. Els Hiemstra-Kuperus is responsible for the organization of the bi-annual European Social Science History Conference (ESSHC) at the International Institute of Social History in Amsterdam. She has also contributed to a publication on the image collection of the International Institute of Social History. Elise van Nederveen Meerkerk wrote her PhD thesis on female textile workers in the early modern Netherlands at the International Institute of Social History. Since then, she has carried out several postdoc projects at Leiden University and the International Institute of Social History. She has published, among other things, on women's and child labour, urban history and business history.

    ’This massive volume, organized into three parts, covers everything the title implies... Recommended.’ Choice 'An important text for academic libraries.' Reference Reviews 'The book is [...] more than comparative labour history and has some elements of a major global study of an industrial sector over time. There are some really penetrating and thought-provoking essays that increase the importance of the volume as a contribution to contemporary debates in global history.' Economic History Review 'A product of the International Institute of Social History, it is an impressive work containing comparative historiography. It is an essential reference...' Labour/Le Travail '... comprehensive... New York Times Magazine