Obermann Conversations Program: Domestic Stories

Nov 14, 2019

04:00 PM - 05:00 PM

Iowa City Public Library, A

123 South Linn Street, Iowa City, IA 52240

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Photo of a woman carrying a tray with words "Ready to serve. Trained Efficient Workers. Household Service Demonstration Project."

How have relationships between domestic workers and employees changed over time, including around issues of race and gender? What are issues of pay injustice that have been true in the past and how are workers addressing such issues today? This Obermann Conversation includes a historian, a feminist podcaster, and a labor expert.

Catherine Stewart, a history professor from Cornell College and an Obermann Fellow-in-Residence, is working on a book, The New Maid: African American Women and Domestic Service During the New Deal, which provides a much needed social and cultural history of African American women who labored as household workers during the New Deal.

Donna Cleveland is a magazine editor and the producer of Thread the Needle, a feminist podcast. An upcoming episode focuses on an eastern Iowa cleaning service that is owned and operated by a Latina. 

Jennifer Sherer is Director of The University of Iowa Labor Center, where she oversees statewide outreach, engagement, and research projects on labor issues.

For more information, head to https://obermann.uiowa.edu/events/domestic-stories. 

Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to attend all University of Iowa–sponsored events. If you are a person with a disability who requires a reasonable accommodation in order to participate in this program, please contact in advance at