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Making the Empire WorkLabor and United States Imperialism$
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Daniel E. Bender and Jana K. Lipman

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9781479871254

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9781479871254.001.0001

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The Advantages of Empire

The Advantages of Empire

Chinese Servants and Conflicts over Settler Domesticity in the “White Pacific,” 1870–1900

(p.185) 7 The Advantages of Empire
Making the Empire Work

Andrew T. Urban

NYU Press

This chapter discusses Aaron Sargent and Reverend Otis Gibson's dispute concerning Chinese domestic labor in the United States during the proceedings of United States Congress's Joint Special Committee to Investigate Chinese Immigration. Gibson and Sargent's impasse reflected a broader debate about domestic labor and to what extent white women workers had the right to establish sovereignty over the home as a workplace. Through their discourse the chapter shows that questions about whether servants deserved to socialize in their employers' homes and outside them, reject assignments that they had not specifically agreed to do, or implement their managerial prerogatives over how the labor was to be completed had become a national concern.

Keywords:   Aaron Sargent, Otis Gibson, Chinese domestic labor, white women workers, managerial prerogatives

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