The first organized resistance to sexual harassment grew out of the women’s movement, emerging at the intersection of activism against employment discrimination and feminist opposition to violence against women. The issue of sexual harassment brought together women’s workplace concerns with resistance to male sexual aggression. In the mid-1970s two organizations formed to focus primarily on sexual harassment—Working Women United in Ithaca, New York, and the Alliance Against Sexual Coercion in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Based on archival materials and interviews, this article documents the early movement against sexual harassment, focusing particularly on the feminist activists who founded these organizations who they were and how they shaped the movement against sexual harassment. These women made significant contributions to the public understanding of sexual harassment and the development of legal prohibitions against it.
Bernice Yeung’s In A Day’s Work: The Fight to End Sexual Violence Against American’s Most Vulnerable Workers exposes the underbelly of economies filled with employers who take advantage of immigrant women’s need to earn a basic living. When these women find the courage to speak up, Yeung reveals, they are too often met by apathetic bosses and underresourced government agencies. But In a Day’s Work also tells a story of resistance, introducing a group of courageous allies who challenge dangerous and discriminatory workplace conditions alongside aggrieved workers—and win. Moving and inspiring, this book will change our understanding of the lives of immigrant women.