By Anna R. Igra
Laying off new mild on modern campaigns to motivate marriage between welfare recipients and to prosecute "deadbeat dads," other halves with out Husbands lines the efforts of revolutionary reformers to make "runaway husbands" help their households. Anna R. Igra investigates the interrelated histories of marriage and welfare coverage within the early 1900s, revealing how reformers sought to make marriage the answer to women's and kid's poverty. Igra faucets a wealthy trove of case records from the nationwide Desertion Bureau, a Jewish husband-location employer, and follows countless numbers of abandoned ladies during the welfare and criminal platforms of early twentieth-century manhattan urban. She integrates a huge variety of themes, together with Americanization as a gendered procedure, breadwinning as a degree of manhood, the connection among shopper tradition and social coverage formation, the category dimensions of relatives legislation, and the Jewish neighborhood as a resource of welfare coverage innovation. Igra analyzes the heritage of antidesertion reform from its emergence in social coverage debates, during the institution of household kin courts, to melancholy aid courses. She exhibits that early twentieth-century reformers, by means of trying to make instrumental use of negative people's intimate relatives, expected welfare regulations in our personal time that advertise marriage as a solution to poverty.
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Extra resources for Wives without Husbands: Marriage, Desertion, and Welfare in New York, 1900-1935 (Gender and American Culture)
Reformers continued to press for greater enforcement of the abandonment act and in 1922 secured an extradition treaty with Canada,∑≠ but the problem of extradition proved intractable. ∑∞ Hoping to build on public support for juvenile courts, antidesertion reformers campaigned for domestic relations courts to handle desertion and nonsupport cases. ’’∑≤ In the absence of a public outcry for the creation of domestic relations courts, a small group of legal and social welfare professionals worked to build support among New York City magistrates and public charities administrators.
Both private and public charities in New York adopted this policy, and it was incorporated into mothers’ pensions and later into Depression-era agency guidelines. As charity workers turned to legal coercion to accomplish their economic and social goals, they built institutions that o√ered mechanisms for diverting deserted women away from welfare and toward the legal system instead. They became advocates for legal and court reform, adding legal departments to their own organizations and building domestic relations courts.
The legal machinery for regulating male breadwinning deﬁned men’s obligation as the minimum required to prevent social spending on dependent women and children. Social welfare workers feared that if public assistance programs became available to deserted women, then men would shift their spending from household provision to personal consumption. Concerned about subsidizing male ‘‘self-indulgence,’’ they looked to the new sociolegal institutions for help in preventing welfare fraud by ‘‘shiftless’’ men.
Wives without Husbands: Marriage, Desertion, and Welfare in New York, 1900-1935 (Gender and American Culture) by Anna R. Igra