Immigrant Women

Revised, Second Edition

Edited by Maxine S. Seller

Subjects: Gender Studies
Series: SUNY series in Ethnicity and Race in American Life
Paperback : 9780791419045, 388 pages, July 1994
Hardcover : 9780791419038, 388 pages, July 1994

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Table of contents


Part I: Why They Came

1. About a Wheat Field and a Bowl of Barley Porridge
by Vilhelm Moberg

2. "Factory Girls"
by Chea Villanueva

3. "My Education and Aspirations Demanded More"
by Marie Zakrzewska

4. "He Has the Right to Command You"
by Marie Hall Ets

5. "I Remember How Scared I Was"
by Golda Meir

6. "I Am Alive to Tell You This Story …"
by Anonymous

Part II: Surviving in a New Land

1. Issei Women: "Picture Brides" in America
by Emma Gee

2. "I Escaped with My Life"
by Guri Endreson

3. "Urbanization Without Breakdown"
by Corinne Azen Krause

4. The Diary of a Rent Striker: "Harlem and Hope"
by Innocencia Flores

5. "Paths upon Water"
by Tahira Naqvi

6. Strategies for Growing Old: Basha Is a Survivor
by Barbara Myerhoff

Part III: Work

1. "Better We Glean Than Our Children Starve"
by Hope Williams Sykes

2. A Physician in the "First True 'Woman's Hospital' in the World"
by Marie Zakrzewska

3. "The Duties of the Housewife Remain Manifold and Various"
by Sophonisba Breckinridge

4. "With Respect and Feelings": Voices of West Indian Child Care and Domestic Workers in New York City
by Shellee Colen

5. The Immigrant Woman and Her Job: Agnes D. , Mrs. E. , Angelina, Minnie, Louise M. , and Theresa M.
by Caroline Manning

6. "I Consider Myself a 'Theater Worker' . .."
by Dolores Frida

Part IV: Family

1. "She Will Deny Herself Innocent Enjoyments": Dutiful Irish Daughters
by John Francis Maguire

2. Unmarried Mothers
by Grace Abbott

3. Syrian Women in Chicago: "New Responsibilities … New Skills"
by Safia Haddad

4. "Once You Marry Someone It Is Forever"
by Michiko Tanaka

5. The Vine and the Fruit
by Hope Williams Sykes

6. "We Want to Give a Complete Picture of Who We Are" "Palm Sunday 1981"
by Lorenza Compañeras (Introduction) by Mariana Romo-Carmona

7. A Family Disrupted: "Shikata Ga Nai "—This Cannot Be Helped"
by Jeanne Wakatsuki Houston and James D. Houston

Part V: Community Life

1. "If One Could Help Another"
by Vilhelm Moberg

2. "Let Us Join Hands": The Polish Women's Alliance
by Thaddeus Radzialowski

3. Rosa and the Chicago Commons: "How Can I Not Love America?"
by Marie Hall Ets

4. "The Free Vacation House,"
by Anzia Yezierska

5. "I Bridge a Gap Between Two Cultures": Lyu-Volckhausen, Advocate for the Korean Community
by Anne Field

6. "People Who Do This Kind of Work Are in Such Danger of Burnout": Judy Baca, "Urban Artist"
by Diane Neumaier

Part VI: Education

1. "The Lessons Which Most Influenced My Life . .. Came from My Parents"
by Harriet Pawlowska

2. "An Impossible Dream": The Struggle for Higher Education
by Elizabeth Loza Newby

3. The Stubborn Twig: "My Double Dose of Schooling"
by Monica Sone

4. "I Am a Housewife": English Lessons for Vietnamese Women
by Gail Paradise Kelly

5. "Glad That I Am the Future"
by a Memphis teenager

6. Unfulfilled Aspirations: "Never Used the Brush and Ink"
by Teiko Tomita

Part VII: Social and Political Activists

1. At the End of the Santa Fe Trail
by Sister Blandina Segale

2. "This Is Law, But Where Is the Justice of It"
by Ernestine Potowski Rose

3. "In Memoriam—American Democracy"
by Emma Goldman

4. The March of the Mill Children
by Mary Harris ("Mother") Jones

5. Fasting for Suffrage: "We Don't Want Other Women Ever to Have to Do This Over Again"
by Rose Winslow

6. "Black Women of the World … Push Forward"
by Amy Jacques Garvey

7. "Why Did I Put Up With It All These Years": The Farah Strike
by Lauri Coyle, Gail Hershatter, and Emily Honig

Part VIII: Daughters and Granddaughters

1. A Song for a Barbarian Reed Pipe
by Maxine Hong Kingston

2. The Parish and the Hill
by Mary Doyle Curran

3. "This Is Selina"
by Paule Marshall

4. "We Can Begin to Move toward Sisterhood"
by Barbara Mikulski

5. Join My Struggle: "A Poem for Marshall"
by Anne Martinez

6. Asian-American Women and Feminism: "Gender Equality … Is Not the Exclusive Agenda"
by Lucie Cheng

7. Generations of Women
by Janice Mirikitani

Bibliographical Essay



Immigrant Women combines memoirs, diaries, oral history, and fiction to present an authentic and emotionally compelling record of women's struggles to build new lives in a new land. This new edition has been expanded to include additional material on recent Asian and Hispanic immigration and an updated bibliography.

Maxine Schwartz Seller is Professor in the Graduate School of Education and Adjunct Professor in the Department of History at the State University of New York at Buffalo. She is the author of To Seek America: A History of Ethnic Life in the United States and Ethnic Theater in the United States.


"This book is a collection of first-hand accounts of the experiences and conditions surrounding the emigration of women from other countries to the United States during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. This first-hand narrative format engages the reader and opens up a world of events and encounters that I have not found in any other collection. The book is full of information and insights into the lives of women emigrating from many countries, including the struggles of unmarried Bohemian women as they successfully strive for social acceptance as single parents, and the frightening experiences of Golda Meir as a child leaving Czarist Russia in 1906. It is an excellent work whose narrative, story-telling nature makes it interesting to read. " — Joan K. Smith, Loyola University