Naomi R. Williams
- Doctoral Candidate
- University of Wisconsin-Madison
This project explores the rich and complex working-class community that emerged in Racine, Wisconsin in the 1930s and extended into the 1970s. This was a community composed not only of white males working industrial jobs, but also minorities and women, especially black and Latina workers, who were active in labor and social justice issues. The dissertation assesses the meaning of class by focusing on the history of the service workers union and its relationship with industrial unions in the Racine labor community. Using oral histories along with archival documents from unions, political organizations, and social justice groups, this project seeks to understand the evolving class identity of Racine workers and the extent to which the altered conceptions of class shaped the local political economy of the city.