Download A Peaceful and Working People: Manners, Morals, and Class by William E. French PDF

By William E. French

The mining growth that begun in northern Mexico within the Eighteen Nineties set in movement basic social switch. at the one hand it uprooted many employees, and the troubles of presidency officers, middle-class, reformers, and corporate managers coalesced into legislation and courses to regulate the stressed lots. yet alterations within the mining economic climate and political tradition additionally induced type recognition between retailers and artisans in addition to expert and unskilled employees. This research of the Hidalgo mining district in Chihuahua from the Nineties to the Twenties examines type formation, specifically its relation to social regulate, well known values, and pre-industrial traditions. In arguing that category identification stemmed much less from the character of one's paintings than from the ideals one held, this paintings brings jointly the disparate topics of ethical economic system of mine staff, new mining expertise, and the administration coverage of mine proprietors in the course of the Mexican Revolution.

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Additional info for A Peaceful and Working People: Manners, Morals, and Class Formation in Northern Mexico

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Managers and the Inculcation of the Capitalist Work Ethic 35 3. Moralizing the Masses 63 4. Prostitutes and Guardian Angels: Women, Work, and the Family 87 5. Forced Progress: Workers and the Developmentalist Ideology 109 6. The Great Awakening: Mine Workers, Companies, and the Mexican Revolution 141 7. 2 Meat and Bread Prices in Hidalgo District Municipalities116 Maps 1. Chihuahua, by District, 1910 8 2. Hidalgo District 10 Page vii Acknowledgments While this acknowledgment reads a little like the story of my life, I, nevertheless, want to take this opportunity to thank many people.

Central to this process of class formation were manners and morals. The gente decente disparaged both the aristocracy and the workers: while they labeled the former as idlers who were of no use to a developing Mexico, they condemned the latter as undisciplined and vice ridden. Rather than discuss class conflict and the economic conditions of workers, they pointed to what they regarded as the moral degeneracy of the working class, best symbolized for them by the figure of the prostitute. In contrast to the prostitute, they posited an idealized guardian angel who was to reign over the Porfirian family.

Scott also points out that subordination is often expressed in manners and gestures. Even seemingly small actsa refusal to bow, a defiant posture, castes in India starting to wear turbans and shoessignal a public breaking of the ritual of deference. This same behavior is apparent in northern Mexico, often centering on the use of clothing. Working-class women, for example, by wearing fine clothing, violated middle-class notions of women's appropriate behavior, thus overturning the social hierarchy.

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