The rhetorical sites of Polonian women's collaboration and consciousness-building in Baltimore: in factories and agriculture, they worked and gave strength to our culture
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v, 58 pages
ProgramTowson University. Professional Writing Program
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Baltimoreans often trace their ethnic roots back to the nineteenth century immigrants who settled along the city's eastside. While the community associates Polish immigrant women with canneries and culture clubs, they typically overlook these locations in mainstream discourse for their association with everyday practices. However, examining spaces of work and leisure reveal traditional roles as powerful rhetorical devices. This thesis situates traditionally feminine sites alongside dominant landmarks in order to form a more inclusive collective identity, and explores how Baltimore Polish women accessed the public sphere through socially accepted maternal, domestic, and benevolent acts in canneries and ethnic organizations like the Polish Women's Alliance.