INDIGENOUS WOMEN AND WORK: FROM LABOR TO ACTIVISM
Edited by Carol Williams
(Champaign: University of Illinois Press, 2012), 320 pages.
Indigenous women's participation in the workforce of the post-colonial economy has been inadequately documented around the world. A compelling collection of seventeen essays, Indigenous Women and Work: From Labor to Activism seeks to fill this void by challenging the limited perspectives of indigenous women's labor history across four countries: Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the United States. By examining the nexuses of racism, colonialism, and indigeneity using historical accounts and juxtaposing narratives and analytical passages, the authors examine how indigenous women's working lives have been shaped from the late 1830s to the 1980s.
The sobering narratives of indigenous women presented in this book reveal the various facets of discrimination and marginalization in formal and informal markets. Imposed settler gender roles narrowed and negatively redefined labor opportunities for indigenous women in contrast to their traditional leadership roles. Despite seminal roles in nation building, women received minimal compensation, if an); and often their work was dismissed as...