‘The Work that Makes all Other Work Possible’: Domestic Work and Contemporary Domestic Worker Organizing for Justice and Dignity in the United States.

Shawki, Noha.

Journal for Peace and Justice Studies 25, no. 2 (2015): 143-166.


This article analyzes the movement seeking to improve labor and human rights protections for domestic workers in the U.S. Drawing on theoretical formulations from the social movement literature, the article develops a theoretically informed account of the ways in which the movement was effective in engaging domestic workers and securing a number of political and legislative victories in recent years. I argue that organizing efforts that provide members of marginalized groups, such as domestic workers, opportunities to meet and interact and that focus on leadership development and empowerment can help create an oppositional consciousness and a group perspective among group members and increase their level of political engagement. I demonstrate that this was the case for the domestic worker movement in the U.S. This case study provides an example of how social movements can provide representation to marginalized groups and bring about progressive change in social policy.

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