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On Tuesday, May 11, 2021 at 6 pm, the library will celebrate the winners of the 2020 Wesleyan Library Undergraduate Research Prize at a virtual event, which will begin with a talk by Wesleyan Professor of History Ronald Schatz on his new book, The Labor Board Crew: Remaking Worker-Employer Relations from Pearl Harbor to the Reagan Era (University of Illinois Press, January 2021).
The Undergraduate Research Prize was inaugurated in 2017 to honor excellence in undergraduate research and writing apart from theses, based on the student’s use of Wesleyan’s library collections and resources, evidence of learning about research techniques, and quality of writing. The 2020 Library Prize competition was paused in March 2020 due to the pandemic, and judging only resumed this spring. The Library is pleased to announce the newest prize winners.
1st place : Evelyn Burke ’21 “An Unsettling Silence: tolerance as cooperation in the relationship between the Catholic Church, labor unions and organized crime” – a paper written for HIST380 Labor and Religion in American History (Professor Ronald Schatz)
2nd place : Lexa Krebs ’22 “Women as Strategic Actors within the Theater of War during The Mau Mau Uprising” – a paper written for HIST302 Reproductive Politics and the Family in Africa (Professor Laura Ann Twagira)
Honorable mention: Ori Cantwell ’22 “Like a Virgin: ‘Flipping the Switch’ on White Evangelical Purity Identities” – a paper written for RELI379 Christianity and Sexuality (Professor Mary-Jane Rubenstein).
For more information about the event, email Jennifer Hadley at firstname.lastname@example.org. Registration is not required, but if you would like to receive updates, please RSVP via the Facebook announcement or this RSVP form.
Click here to order The Labor Board Crew from Wesleyan RJ Julia Bookstore. If you live in the Middletown area and would like to have your copy signed by Professor Schatz prior to picking it up, please let us know here.
More about The Labor Board Crew: Remaking Worker-Employer Relations from Pearl Harbor to the Reagan Era
Ronald Schatz tells the story of the team of young economists and lawyers recruited to the National War Labor Board to resolve union-management conflicts during the Second World War. The crew (including Clark Kerr, John Dunlop, Jean McKelvey, and Marvin Miller) exerted broad influence on the U.S. economy and society for the next forty years. They handled thousands of grievances and strikes. They founded academic industrial relations programs. When the 1960s student movement erupted, universities appointed them as top administrators charged with quelling the conflicts. In the 1970s, they developed systems that advanced public sector unionization and revolutionized employment conditions in Major League Baseball. Schatz argues that the Labor Board vets, who saw themselves as disinterested technocrats, were in truth utopian reformers aiming to transform the world.
“A fascinating collective biography of the architects of postwar U.S. industrial relations, a unique generation whose pluralist worldview was forged in the crucible of wartime. Schatz brilliantly exposes their subsequent leadership shaping a variety of institutions, from higher education to international diplomacy, even as the industrial relations system they had created devolved.”–Ruth Milkman, Gender at Work: The Dynamics of Job Segregation by Sex during World War II
Ronald W. Schatz is a professor of history at Wesleyan University. He is the author of The Electrical Workers: A History of Labor at General Electric and Westinghouse, 1923–60.
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