Working Toward Whiteness: How America's Immigrants Became White: The Strange Journey from Ellis Island to the Suburbs

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At the vanguard of the study of race and labour in American history, David R. Roediger is the author of the now-classic The Wages of Whiteness , a study of racism in the development of a white working class in nineteenth-century America. In Working Toward Whiteness , he continues that history into the twentieth century. He recounts how American ethnic groups considered white today-including Jewish-, Italian-, and Polish-Americans-once occupied a confused racial status in their new country. They eventually became part of white America thanks to the nascent labour movement, New Deal reforms, and a rise in home-buying. From ethnic slurs to racially restrictive covenants- the racist real estate agreements that ensured all-white neighbourhoods- Roediger explores the murky realities of race in twentieth-century America. A masterful history by an award-winning writer, Working Toward Whiteness charts the strange transformation of these new immigrants into the white ethnics of America today.