Migratory farm workers provide the extra hands that are so badly needed during the planting and harvest season in the United States. Although these workers have been essential to the American agricultural system for more than a hundred years, our knowledge of them is limited and quite fragmentary; it can be divided roughly into two types of information. On the one hand, we have the statistical data collected by various censuses and the data gathered by agricultural econ- omists to study the supply of and demand for farm labor. The economic aspects of farm labor generally predominate in such material. On the other, we have the scientific studies and journalistic descriptions that report on migratory farm by using a qualitative approach. The social scientists and journalists who workers have compiled these reports lived in the labor camps and have vividly described the dismal and oppressive conditions these workers must endure. The drawback of the first type of data is that its orientation to economic problems makes it too superficial and one-sided.
It fails to interrelate the diverse economic factors affecting the lives and work of all farm workers, and conse- quently presents a distorted and incomplete picture of migratory farm worker life. Also, because the migratory farm workers are quite elusive and usually keep a low profIle, they are often underrepresented in such data. The data gathered by using qualitative methods have the major disadvantage of being quite limited in scope.
1. The Plight of the Migratory Farm Worker.- 1. The Unknown Rural Poor.- 2. Problems in Migratory Life.- 3. Migratory Farm Workers, Migrants, and Migration Theory.- 2. Migratory Farm Workers: Their History and Socioeconomic Context.- 1. The Agricultural Revolution.- 2. Exclusion of Farm Workers from Social Legislation.- 3. Foreign Farm Workers in the United States.- 3.1. Importing and Exploiting Ethnic Groups in Farm Labor: 1776 through the Depression.- 3.2. Regulating Farm Labor: World War II and Thereafter.- 4. The East Coast Stream of Migratory Farm Workers.- 4.1. Migratory Patterns in the United States.- 4.2. Development of the East Coast Stream.- 4.3. The People Involved.- 4.4. Operation of the Migratory System.- 4.5. Work in the Fields.- 4.6. Life "on the Season".- 3. Unemployment Insurance in Agriculture: Recent Policies and the 1970 Survey.- 1. Why Farm Workers Were Excluded from Unemployment Insurance.- 2. The Changing Political and Social Climate.- 3. Action taken by Congress: Legislation and a Survey.- 4. Aims and Results of the 1970 Survey.- 4. Mobility of the Migratory Farm Worker.- 1. Traveling to Find Work.- 1.1. Migration during the Depression Years.- 1.2. Migratory Workers on the East Coast.- 1.3. Mobility and Worker Characteristics.- 2. The Degree of Mobility in the East Coast Migratory Stream.- 2.1. The Sample.- 2.2. Analysis of the Migratory Patterns.- 3. Worker Characteristics and the Degree of Interstate Mobility.- 4. Mobility Reappraised.- 5. Differences in the Earnings of Migratory Farm Workers.- 1. Diverse Factors Affecting Earnings.- 2. The Earnings Function: Methodology.- 3. The Migratory Farm Worker Model.- 4. The Nonmigratory Farm Worker Model.- 5. Conclusions: Unequal Opportunities in Farm Work.- 6. Migratory and Nonmigratory Farm Workers: A Comparison.- 1. Occupational Opportunities and the Migratory Farm Worker.- 2. Migratory Status and Farm Worker Characteristics.- 2.1. Ethnic Group Membership and Migratory Status.- 2.2. Education, Occupational Skills, and Migratory Status.- 2.3 Social Background and Migratory Status.- 2.4. Age and Migratory Status.- 2.5. Family Characteristics and Migratory Status.- 3. Ethnicity: the Determinant Factor.- 7. Conclusions and Policy Implications.- 1. The Most Significant Findings.- 2. Interpreting the Findings in Terms of Policy Implications.- 2.1. Discrimination in Agriculture.- 2.2. Structural Problems.- 2.3. The Inefficacy of the Policies and Proposals.- 3. The Future of Migratory Farm Work.- Appendix A: Questionnaire.- Appendix B.- Appendix C: Logarithmic Forms of the Earnings Functions.
Series: Institute of Social Studies Series on Development of Societies
Number Of Pages: 212
Published: December 2009
Publisher: Kluwer Academic Publishers
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 23.5 x 15.5
Weight (kg): 1.1