I felt as if this topic of Labor Struggles, was very important for all of us to read about. The reason I say this is because reading the first reading Winston Salem, North Carolina, by Robert Korstad really made me think of all the struggles the color black people actually went through during that time. As I read I noticed that the reading mentioned a lot about unity and how they were all always united. For instance Robert Korsad mentioned on page 161 that "the church often provided classes in reading and writing and in some cases hosted public school classes as well." "in most denominations, women formed powerful, autonomous department and fought to secure the right to ordination. Even when they were banned from preaching, they served as teachers, missionaries, and musical directors". In other words women where the ones who did everything and because of the church they where able to spend as much possible and all be united. Another thing that was mentioned that kept these people united was music. Music I believe was a big part in there lives, because Korstad says" Often identified with a particular institution (the drivers and mechanics of the safe Bus company, for instance, formed a choral club in 1938), these singers competed against one another, staged benefits for a community projects, traveled widely, and launched individual on music careers". This quote explains what i mentioned about music being another factor that kept these people united even while they where on a bus. Music was something that kept color people united, while they all worked in Winston -Salem in the farms and in the Tobacco Companies. The workers that worked in these companies at times used there singing and there unity of church to be able to work in a comfortable place and be able to feel united in a comfortable environment. These people always sang while working which was something to be as close as they where.
Another reason why I felt this reading was very interesting was because Korstad mentioned how there where twice as much women as they where men, so pretty much women where the ones who were doing all the movement during that time, working in the tobacco companies and not getting paid the sufficient for the work being done by them, was not a good thing but these women needed to stay in these jobs in order for them to be able to support there families. Women I believe played a very important role during that time. And another thing I could not believe while I was reading this reading was how it was mentioned that these women worked in the tobacco plantations as well as the rich family homes. These jobs these women held were very difficult but the good thing was that they were still able to hold them. It comes to show that women are very strong and they we are also able to hold many difficult tasks at once.
by Maria Campos