An "inferior class of white aliens". The Italians and the labour movement in San Francisco
Author/s: Tommaso Caiazza 
Year:  2021 Issue: 296 Language: Italian 
Pages:  30 Pg. 201-230 FullText PDF:  0 KB
DOI:  10.3280/ic296-oa1
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This article examines the relationship between Italian immigrants and the labour movement in early 20th century San Francisco. "Race" is the lens through which the Italians’ process of integration is investigated in the light of the racist policies adopted by labour unions, which admitted only "whites" and excluded Asian immigrants. By considering a wide variety of sources (the labour press, trade unions’ records, data on employment), the article reveals how Italians, although discriminated against and judged as racially inferior, were nonetheless recognized as "white" and, thus, assimilated into the labour movement. According to the author this was caused by an early development of a common "Caucasian" identity among European groups, modelled against Asian immigration, which reduced tensions between the "old stock" and the "new immigrants", such as Italians, prevailing elsewhere in the United States.
Keywords: Italian migration to the U.S., Whiteness, Racism, Labor history

Tommaso Caiazza, An "inferior class of white aliens". The Italians and the labour movement in San Francisco in "ITALIA CONTEMPORANEA" 296/2021, pp. 201-230, DOI:10.3280/ic296-oa1


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