Nimisha Barton: Motherhood, Neighborhood, Nationhood. Immigrant Women, Apartment Life, and Cultures of Motherhood in Paris Populaire, 1900-1940.
France emerged as the immigrant nation of Europe par excellence in the early twentieth century. While immigration scholars have demonstrated that a vibrant working-class culture brought foreign men into the neighborhood fold through public spaces, historians have yet to investigate how so-called private spaces - above all the apartment house - accomplished the same cultural work among foreign-born women. This paper demonstrates that the culture of working-class motherhood that revolved around the apartment house served as a privileged path to acculturation for immigrant women in France in the first half of the twentieth century.
Nimisha Barton received her Ph.D. in history from Princeton University in June 2014. she is currently a Visiting Scholar with the Department of French and Romance Philology at Columbia University and is revising her book manuscript, Family Matters: Gender, Immigration and Acculturation in Paris, 1900-1945.