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Peacocks of the Fields: The Working Lives of Migrant Farms Workers

Emiel W. Owens

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ISBN 10: 1425997678 / ISBN 13: 9781425997670
Published by AuthorHouse
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Hardcover. 176 pages. Dimensions: 9.1in. x 6.1in. x 0.8in.While a serving of fruits and vegetables picked by the hands of migrant farm workers adds sustenance to the American diet, infants and children are exposed to harmful pesticides. Misery, suffering, violence illness, and death may be the workers only harvest. This memoir details the lives of a subculture in our society, a population large enough to constitute a small nation. Peacocks of the Fields: Working Life of Migrant Farm Workers Depicts the lives of two migrant work crews composed of 50 workers, pulling sweet corn and picking red ripe tomatoes in the East Coast Migrant Stream over a migrant work season during the late 1970s. The name Kwan in this memoir is the alias for Emiel Owens, a 46-year old African American, and the Principal Investigator. Kwan shares his experience during the year as a member of the two migrant crews, highlighting how they travel, where they work, what income they earn, how they survive in deplorable work camps, and how competition for scare economic and human resources under constrained camp living conditions lead to human discards, violence and in some cases, death. As I start picking tomatoes to day, I wasnt aware that there were two separate work crews in the field. The female tomato checker with the black-and-white straw hat is with Humbertos crew; Rosa, her sister, and two brothers make up Sams crew. Today, there is a territorial dominance intrusion between these two crews. As the two crews move toward each other, they find themselves competing for scarce fruit in a limited row space, tempers flare and a physical altercation almost takes place in the field between members of two crews. Suddenly, things become quiet and both crews leave the field. About 6: 00 P. M. , the two conflicting crews meet again at the Lee Brother Commissary in the labor camp. The conflict escalates to violence. Sam and his brother, Amulso, meet Humberto, his brother Francisco, and two other workers, Alexon and Jorge in a gun duel inside the bar at the commissary. When the smoke clears a few moments later, Rosas brothers, Sam and Amulso, have mortally wounded Humberto and Francisco by shooting them almost at point-blank range in the neck with a sawed-off shotgun. Alexon is shot in the right side and paralyzed and Jorge is wounded, although less severely. In spite of their mortal wounds, Humberto and Francisco walk slowly through the front door of the bar into the night and disappear. They hold back the blood pouring from their neck wounds with their hands as blood runs down their arms onto their chests. Sam and Amulso walk out behind them and they too disappear in the night unharmed. This item ships from multiple locations. Your book may arrive from Roseburg,OR, La Vergne,TN. Bookseller Inventory # 9781425997670

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Peacocks of the Fields: The Working Lives of...

Publisher: AuthorHouse

Binding: Hardcover

Book Condition:New

Book Type: Hardcover

About this title

Synopsis:

While a serving of fruits and vegetables picked by the hands of migrant farm workers adds sustenance to the American diet, infants and children are exposed to harmful pesticides. Misery, suffering, violence illness, and death may be the worker's only harvest. This memoir details the lives of a subculture in our society, a population large enough to constitute a small nation. Peacocks of the Fields: Working Life of Migrant Farm Workers Depicts the lives of two migrant work crews composed of 50 workers, pulling sweet corn and picking red ripe tomatoes in the East Coast Migrant Stream over a migrant work season during the late 1970's. The name Kwan in this memoir is the alias for Emiel Owens, a 46-year old African American, and the Principal Investigator. Kwan shares his experience during the year as a member of the two migrant crews, highlighting how they travel, where they work, what income they earn, how they survive in deplorable work camps, and how competition for scare economic and human resources under constrained camp living conditions lead to human discards, violence and in some cases, death. As I start picking tomatoes to day, I wasn't aware that there were two separate work crews in the field. The female tomato checker with the black-and-white straw hat is with Humberto's crew; Rosa, her sister, and two brothers make up Sam's crew. Today, there is a territorial dominance intrusion between these two crews. As the two crews move toward each other, they find themselves competing for scarce fruit in a limited row space, tempers flare and a physical altercation almost takes place in the field between members of two crews. Suddenly, things become quiet and both crews leave the field. About 6:00 P.M., the two conflicting crews meet again at the Lee Brother Commissary in the labor camp. The conflict escalates to violence. Sam and his brother, Amulso, meet Humberto, his brother Francisco, and two other workers, Alexon and Jorge in a gun duel inside the bar at the commissary. When the smoke clears a few moments later, Rosa's brothers, Sam and Amulso, have mortally wounded Humberto and Francisco by shooting them almost at point-blank range in the neck with a sawed-off shotgun. Alexon is shot in the right side and paralyzed and Jorge is wounded, although less severely. In spite of their mortal wounds, Humberto and Francisco walk slowly through the front door of the bar into the night and disappear. They hold back the blood pouring from their neck wounds with their hands as blood runs down their arms onto their chests. Sam and Amulso walk out behind them and they too disappear in the night unharmed.

About the Author:

This field study was conducted by Emiel W. Owens (Ph D) and his brother Clarence B. Owens (Ph D). Idel McLaughlin assisted in the preparation of this manuscript. Emiel W. Owens was raised in Smithville, a small town in southwest Texas. He spent most of his youth working as a field hand picking cotton and cutting cedar logs with his father, who was a crew chief. He received his Bachelor of Science degree in horticulture from Prairie View A&M University in 1947 and his Master of Science and Doctorate degrees in economics and finance from Ohio State University in 1952. Currently, Professor Owens is Associate Professor of Finance at the University of Houston. He has conducted seminars on credit unions and depository type financial institutions for domestic and foreign institutions and groups and has been a consultant for Business and the United States Government in West and East Africa and the former Soviet Union. He is the recipient of the "Favorite Professor" award by student organizations for teaching excellence in 1994 and has a senior (MBA) level textbook entitled Financial Markets and Institutions, Evolution and Contemporary Issues in production at Prentice-Hall Publishing Company, copyright 2006.

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