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Manufacturing bodies : a (re)description of the undocumented sweatshop worker in the US

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Manufacturing bodies : a (re)description of the undocumented sweatshop worker in the US

Ricardo Andres, Garza Wicker (2005) Manufacturing bodies : a (re)description of the undocumented sweatshop worker in the US. Masters thesis, Concordia University.

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Abstract

This thesis analyzes the discursive construction of the undocumented sweatshop worker in the mainstream US media. It is centered on the media coverage of a raid by US authorities on a sweatshop in El Monte, California in August, 1995, in which 72 undocumented workers were found under captivity and extreme working conditions. Based on a social-constructivist epistemology, this study (re)describes how the undocumented sweatshop worker is constituted, through language, as a subject and it analyzes the implications of such a construction in its social and political context. A selection of US newspaper articles---from the New York Times and the Washington Post---and the exhibition Between a Rock and a Hard Place: A History of American Sweatshops, 1820-Present, organized by the National Museum of American History, are qualitatively approached through Critical Discourse Analysis. Through such an analysis, this thesis problematizes the mainstream US media by (re)describing the dangers of portraying the immigrant sweatshop worker as an absent, alien and criminal subject; as a passive victim and a redeemed resident, and by not emphasizing the interconnectedness of the sweatshop phenomenon to the structural dynamics of global capitalism.

Divisions:Concordia University > Faculty of Arts and Science > Communication Studies
Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Authors:Ricardo Andres, Garza Wicker
Pagination:vii, 134 leaves : ill. ; 29 cm.
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:M.A.
Program:Communication Studies
Date:2005
Thesis Supervisor(s):Buxton, William
ID Code:8499
Deposited By:Concordia University Libraries
Deposited On:18 Aug 2011 14:27
Last Modified:18 Aug 2011 14:27
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