Keeping “Idle Youngsters” Out of Trouble

Elyssa Faison

in Managing Women

Published by University of California Press

Published in print October 2007 | ISBN: 9780520252967
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520934184 | DOI:
Keeping “Idle Youngsters” Out of Trouble

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This chapter focuses on the 1929 ban on night work for women and children and the sense of crisis the ban provoked among managers of female labor. The end of night work sparked concerns about the use of workers' free time, an increase in which managers feared would result in labor organizing and actions against employers or in immoral sexual activities. Managers' attempts to discipline textile workers in accordance with their construction as future wives and mothers intensified after the prohibition of night work. Company managers implemented new educational, cultural, and physical-exercise programs in order to direct every working and nonworking hour of their female employees. This shift toward bodily management signaled a new strategy by companies to combat labor organizing and the increasingly large and violent strikes of the post-Depression era.

Keywords: night work; female labor; textile workers; labor organizing; post-Depression era

Chapter.  9780 words. 

Subjects: Asian History

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