Beyond Cannery Row
Sicilian Women, Immigration, and Community in Monterey, California, 1915-99
Publication Year: 2005
Published by: University of Illinois Press
It is a great pleasure to acknowledge the debts I have incurred in writing this book. First, I would like to thank the Sicilian families of Monterey, California, who opened their homes and their hearts to me. They generously allowed me to share their lives...
Here is how it was. The families came from Italy for a better life. In Italy there was nothing. The women couldn’t work. There was no work. Only fishing. That was for the men. So the families got together. They sent the father or the son first. My grandfather went in 1912. He went to Chicago, because...
1. Sicilian Women, Fishing Lives, and Migration Strategies
The chapter begins with an analysis of the demographics of the Sicilian migration over time to demonstrate that it was clearly a family and chain migration from the outset. Next, this chapter will explore the ways in which the Sicilian migration to Monterey...
2. Work and Identity
The woman responsible for the preceding narrative, Mrs. Lucy Ventimiglia Gruwell, lives in Pacific Grove. She is ninety years old but looks and acts twenty years younger. She is tiny, full of wit and energy. She insists repeatedly that she “likes to...
3. Family, Conflict, Community
The preceding narratives from Peter Cutino and Vita Crivello Davi expressed the passion and power of Sicilian family and community life in Monterey. It was echoed by narrators who also described extremely close connections between individuals and couples that began in their childhoods. It was clear from the narratives that..
4. Good Americans
The desire to acquire citizenship on the part of new immigrants is a measure of the extent to which they express a sense of belonging to the body politic of their adopted state. As such, it is both a highly valued and highly controversial matter for immigrants...
5. Women on Parade: The Political Meaning of the Festa
Rosalie Ferrante’s vivid memory of the Santa Rosalia Festa in the preceding narrative suggested just how compelling a celebration it was in the eyes of a young child. By the 1950s and 1960s, when Ms. Ferrante experienced her...
Monterey, California, is a special place. It is richly diverse, both culturally and environmentally, offering scholars a unique opportunity to peer into a microcosm, to explore a complex process such as immigration in a remarkable but manageable milieu. Once the capital...