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Other titles in the Palgrave Studies in Oral History series:

Sticking to the Union: An Oral History of the Life and Times of Julia Ruuttila (Palgrave Studies in Oral History)

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Sticking to the Union: An Oral History of the Life and Times of Julia Ruuttila (Palgrave Studies in Oral History) Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Sandy Polishuk's Sticking to the Union is the best kind of oral history, bringing to life a person and an era quickly passing out of reach. A grassroots tour through twentieth-century radical history, western history, and women's history, it is supported by extensive research amplifying and at times challenging Julia Ruutilla's own reflections. The interplay between the voices of the older and the younger woman is one of the most satisfying features of the book. — Elinor Langer, Author of A Hundred Little Hitlers

Sandy Polishuk offers two gifts-the biography of a fierce local activist, whose life bears witness to the fact that ordinary people can effect social justice, and a scholar's journey into the complicated workings of memory. Sticking to the Union is a fabulous oral history, Julia Ruuttila a compelling subject, and Sandy Polishuk, a thoughtful scholar who allows Ruuttila's voice to drive the narrative, but who also probes the intersections of ego and memory to present the many truths of Ruuttila's life story.-- Mary Murphy, History Department, Montana State University

This is a gem. Julia Ruuttila gives an imaginative, vivid account of herhard times and struggles as a labor radical, feminist, anti-racist, and internationalist peace advocate in the Pacific Northwest. Sandy Polishuk sets Julia's "lessons of life" into a clear historical context, and helps us see how her life is imagined as well as lived. Together, they show how an ordinary person can live an extraordinary life by fighting for a better world. - Michael Honey, Harry Bridges Chair of Labor Studies, University of Washington

Sandy Polishuk deftly explores the challenges of history and memory in this fascinating oral history biography of Julia Ruuttila: consummate union, civil rights, and peace activist of the Pacific Northwest. Although haunted by failed relationships, poverty, McCarthyite persecution, and a frustrated writing career, Ruuttila embraced every waking moment of her eighty-four years to struggle for social and economic justice. The story of this extraordinary woman should inspire a new generation of activists. — Laurie Mercier, author of Anaconda: Labor, Community, and Culture in Montana's Smelter City (Univ. Illinois, 2001) and Associate Professor of History, Washington State University Vancouver.

Synopsis:

Although married four times, Julia Ruuttila claimed that the love of her life was not a man but a union. From her Industrial Workers of the World origins to the CIO, the International Woodworkers of America, and the International Longshore and Warehouse Union, she stuck to unions throughout her long and vibrant life. A well known labor activist and journalist in the Pacific Northwest, Ruuttila chose the picket sign and the typewriter as her chief weapons. She possessed a tireless passion for workers and their struggles, whether founding a committee to free the last Wobbly prisoner from the Centralia Tragedy, leading the Ladies' Auxiliary of the IWA during an eight-and-a-half month lockout, or coming before the House Un-American Activities Committee. At the same time, her everyday hardships were not unlike many other working class women of her era: abusive husbands, illegal abortions, poverty, and single motherhood.

In the premier title of Palgrave Macmillan's new oral history series, Ruuttila's remarkable story unfolds in her own words, with author Sandy Polishuk skillfully placing the narrative in its historical context and pointing out where other sources conflict with Ruuttila's account. Sticking to the Union provides a much needed woman's perspective on American labor history of the twentieth century.

Synopsis:

Although married four times, Julia Ruuttila claimed that the love of her life was not a man but a union. From her Industrial Workers of the World origins to the CIO, the International Woodworkers of America, and the International Longshore and Warehouse Union, she stuck to unions throughout her long and vibrant life. A well known labor activist and journalist in the Pacific Northwest, Ruuttila chose the picket sign and the typewriter as her chief weapons. She possessed a tireless passion for workers and their struggles, whether founding a committee to free the last Wobbly prisoner from the Centralia Tragedy, leading the Ladies' Auxiliary of the IWA during an eight-and-a-half month lockout, or coming before the House Un-American Activities Committee. At the same time, her everyday hardships were not unlike many other working class women of her era: abusive husbands, illegal abortions, poverty, and single motherhood.

In the premier title of Palgrave Macmillan's new oral history series, Ruuttila's remarkable story unfolds in her own words, with author Sandy Polishuk skillfully placing the narrative in its historical context and pointing out where other sources conflict with Ruuttila's account. Sticking to the Union provides a much needed woman's perspective on American labor history of the twentieth century.

About the Author

Sandy Polishuk is an adjunct instructor of history at Portland State University.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments* Foreword * Introduction * "That's where I heard about sabotage" * "The valiant never taste of death but once" * "I shed my youth" * "A baking powder in the masses" * "I had a typewriter" * "Free Ray Becker" * "You can't tell about people" * "They were paranoid days" * "My bad reputation caught up with me" * "White trade only" * "It's work that interests me" * "You find friends in improbable places" * "I mean to be your friend" * "The lives of working people are filled with desperation" * "You sure met some wonderful people" * "I shall not come this way again" * "I look around" * Vietnam * "Too old to get beat up" * The Trials of Parenthood * "Do not look back when you latch the gate" * Afterword * Bibliography

Product Details

ISBN:
9781403962393
Foreword:
Kesselman, Amy
Publisher:
Palgrave MacMillan
Foreword by:
Kesselman, Amy
Foreword:
Kesselman, Amy
Author:
Polishuk, Sandy
Author:
Kesselman, Amy
Subject:
General
Subject:
Political
Subject:
Women
Subject:
History
Subject:
United States - General
Subject:
Women social reformers
Subject:
Labor & Industrial Relations - Unions
Subject:
General Biography
Subject:
Novelists, American -- 20th century.
Subject:
Women journalists -- United States.
Subject:
Biography-Political
Edition Description:
Trade Cloth
Series:
Palgrave Studies in Oral History
Publication Date:
20031131
Binding:
HARDCOVER
Grade Level:
Professional and scholarly
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Y
Pages:
273
Dimensions:
9.25 x 6.13 in

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Related Subjects

Biography » Political
Biography » Women
History and Social Science » Politics » Labor

Sticking to the Union: An Oral History of the Life and Times of Julia Ruuttila (Palgrave Studies in Oral History) New Hardcover
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Product details 273 pages Palgrave MacMillan - English 9781403962393 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by ,
Although married four times, Julia Ruuttila claimed that the love of her life was not a man but a union. From her Industrial Workers of the World origins to the CIO, the International Woodworkers of America, and the International Longshore and Warehouse Union, she stuck to unions throughout her long and vibrant life. A well known labor activist and journalist in the Pacific Northwest, Ruuttila chose the picket sign and the typewriter as her chief weapons. She possessed a tireless passion for workers and their struggles, whether founding a committee to free the last Wobbly prisoner from the Centralia Tragedy, leading the Ladies' Auxiliary of the IWA during an eight-and-a-half month lockout, or coming before the House Un-American Activities Committee. At the same time, her everyday hardships were not unlike many other working class women of her era: abusive husbands, illegal abortions, poverty, and single motherhood.

In the premier title of Palgrave Macmillan's new oral history series, Ruuttila's remarkable story unfolds in her own words, with author Sandy Polishuk skillfully placing the narrative in its historical context and pointing out where other sources conflict with Ruuttila's account. Sticking to the Union provides a much needed woman's perspective on American labor history of the twentieth century.

"Synopsis" by ,
Although married four times, Julia Ruuttila claimed that the love of her life was not a man but a union. From her Industrial Workers of the World origins to the CIO, the International Woodworkers of America, and the International Longshore and Warehouse Union, she stuck to unions throughout her long and vibrant life. A well known labor activist and journalist in the Pacific Northwest, Ruuttila chose the picket sign and the typewriter as her chief weapons. She possessed a tireless passion for workers and their struggles, whether founding a committee to free the last Wobbly prisoner from the Centralia Tragedy, leading the Ladies' Auxiliary of the IWA during an eight-and-a-half month lockout, or coming before the House Un-American Activities Committee. At the same time, her everyday hardships were not unlike many other working class women of her era: abusive husbands, illegal abortions, poverty, and single motherhood.

In the premier title of Palgrave Macmillan's new oral history series, Ruuttila's remarkable story unfolds in her own words, with author Sandy Polishuk skillfully placing the narrative in its historical context and pointing out where other sources conflict with Ruuttila's account. Sticking to the Union provides a much needed woman's perspective on American labor history of the twentieth century.

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