Hardback

Race, Gender and Contemporary International Labor Migration Regimes

21st Century Coolies?

9781789901993 Edward Elgar Publishing
Edited by Leticia Saucedo, Martin Luther King, Jr. Professor of Law, University of California Davis School of Law and Robyn Magalit Rodriguez, Professor of Asian American Studies and Founding Director, Bulosan Center for Filipino Studies, University of California, Davis, US
Publication Date: December 2022 ISBN: 978 1 78990 199 3 Extent: c 326 pp
Migrant workers around the world are subject to exploitative labor practices that give employers extraordinary bargaining power. This book brings together researchers, practitioners and advocates who explore the many ways that contracted migrant workers are rendered vulnerable in the workplace. In this book, the term ‘21st century coolie’ is deployed as a heuristic that foregrounds the deeply unequal structures shaping the transnational flows of short-term, migrant workers. The term ‘coolie’ harkens back to the labor arrangements of earlier centuries that involved conscripted labor, indentured servitude and contract labor across national borders. Like those of past centuries, today’s ‘coolies’ are subject to legal constraints inside and outside the employment relationship that force them into subjugated positions within the workplace.

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Migrant workers around the world are subject to exploitative labor practices that give employers extraordinary bargaining power. This book brings together researchers, practitioners and advocates who explore the many ways that contracted migrant workers are rendered vulnerable in the workplace. In this book, the term ‘21st century coolie’ is deployed as a heuristic that foregrounds the deeply unequal structures shaping the transnational flows of short-term, migrant workers. The term “coolie” harkens back to the labor arrangements of earlier centuries that involved conscripted labor, indentured servitude and contract labor across national borders. Like those of past centuries, today’s ’coolies’ are subject to legal constraints inside and outside the employment relationship that force them into subjugated positions within the workplace.

The chapters of this anthology situate contemporary global migration regimes in histories of colonization, uncover their racialized as well as gendered nature, and examine the role of nation-states in perpetuating conditions of extreme exploitation. The permeability, mutability, and durability of racial capitalism is revealed through an interdisciplinary and practice-oriented lens.

Law and social science students in graduate courses on migration, labor, employment, employment discrimination, and race and the law will gain a deeper understanding of the issues facing migrant workers today, as will students in humanities, performance studies, narrative studies and communication studies.
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