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Fighting in ParadiseLabor Unions, Racism, and Communists in the Making of Modern Hawaii$
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Gerald Horne

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780824835026

Published to Hawaii Scholarship Online: November 2016

DOI: 10.21313/hawaii/9780824835026.001.0001

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Racism—and Reaction

Racism—and Reaction

Chapter:
(p.195) Chapter 11 Racism—and Reaction
Source:
Fighting in Paradise
Author(s):

Gerald Horne

Publisher:
University of Hawai'i Press
DOI:10.21313/hawaii/9780824835026.003.0012

This chapter discusses the issue of race and the labor movement in Hawaii as the twentieth century entered its second half. Drawn by the advertisements of Hawaii as an earthly paradise, the impressions rendered by visiting soldiers and sailors, and a long-standing tradition of seeing the archipelago as worthy of residence, migrants from the mainland had been traveling westward, particularly since the end of the war. Their decision to permanently reside in Hawaii had placed pressure on employment rolls. The changing population and economic climate placed also added strain on the exceedingly intricate racial makeup of Hawaii, which—in turn—created the opportunity for management to pit one group against another. This increased racial diversity was taking root as the United States itself was moving to the right, driven by war in Korea and the purging of Reds from public life. As these migrants who made up this enhanced reserve army of labor increased in number, ready to be deployed against unions—as management saw it—unions responded accordingly. By early August 1950 a local periodical complained that there had been 18 work stoppages already—with more planned. Worse, said this writer, in each instance the International Longshore and Warehousemen's Union was the bargaining agent of the employees involved.

Keywords:   Hawaii, racism, race, population change, migrants, International Longshore and Warehousemen's Union, labor movement, labor unions

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