NYU Press, April 2010
This is the story of English Country Dance, from its 18th century roots in the English cities and countryside, to its transatlantic leap to the U.S. in the 20th century, told by not only a renowned historian but also a folk dancer, who has both immersed himself in the rich history of the folk tradition and rehearsed its steps.
In City Folk, Daniel J. Walkowitz argues that the history of country and folk dancing in America is deeply intermeshed with that of political liberalism and the ‘old left.’ He situates folk dancing within surprisingly diverse contexts, from progressive era reform, and playground and school movements, to the changes in consumer culture, and the project of a modernizing, cosmopolitan middle class society.
Tracing the spread of folk dancing, with particular emphases on English Country Dance, International Folk Dance, and Contra, Walkowitz connects the history of folk dance to social and international political influences in America. Through archival research, oral histories, and ethnography of dance communities, City Folk allows dancers and dancing bodies to speak.
From the norms of the first half of the century, marked strongly by Anglo-Saxon traditions, to the Cold War nationalism of the post-war era, and finally on to the counterculture movements of the 1970s, City Folk injects the riveting history of folk dance in the middle of the story of modern America.
ISBN-10: 0814794696, ISBN-13: 978-0814794692
Continuum, Coming in October 2010
“Rethinking U.S. Labor History" provides a reassessment of the recent growth and new directions in U.S. labor history. Labor History has recently undergone something of a renaissance that has yet to be documented. The book chronicles this rejuvenation with contributions from new scholars as well as established names. "Rethinking U.S. Labor History" focuses particularly on those issues of pressing interest for today's labor historians: the relationship of class and culture; the link between worker's experience and the changing political economy; the role that gender and race have played in America's labor history; and finally, the transnational turn.
ISBN-10: 1441145753, ISBN-13: 978-1441145758
The University of North Carolina Press, 1999
Polls tell us that most Americans—whether they earn $20,000 or $200,000 a year—think of themselves as middle class. As this phenomenon suggests, "middle class" is a category whose definition is not necessarily self-evident. In this book, historian Daniel Walkowitz approaches the question of what it means to be middle class from an innovative angle. Focusing on the history of social workers—who daily patrol the boundaries of class—he examines the changed and contested meaning of the term over the last one hundred years.Walkowitz uses the study of social workers to explore the interplay of race, ethnicity, and gender with class. He examines the trade union movement within the mostly female field of social work and looks at how a paradigmatic conflict between blacks and Jews in New York City during the 1960s shaped late-twentieth-century social policy concerning work, opportunity, and entitlements. In all, this is a story about the ways race and gender divisions in American society have underlain the confusion about the identity and role of the middle class.
ISBN-10: 0807847585, ISBN-13: 978-0807847589