Member Feature – WCSA At-Large Member Elwood Watson Ph.D.

Let’s learn more about Dr Watson!

Dr Watson writes for many public facing outlets

Dr Elwood Watson is a public intellectual.

Increasing interest and racial diversity in WCSA

To be highlighted in a future Member Feature, please fill out the “WCSA Member Highlight Form,” on the bottom of our LinkTree. Use a Gmail account to login and complete the form. Reach out to us at with any questions and please write “member highlight” in the subject line.

In this Week’s Working-Class Perspectives – Envisioning a 21st-Century Worker-Centered Social Compact

The multiple crises of the last few years make clear that the U.S. — and much of the world — is in a period of struggle but also of transformation. In times like these, Joseph A. McCartin argues in Working-Class Perspectives this week, we need a compelling and plausible vision for a more just society, one that will provide a rallying call for working-class organizing and activism. Without it, McCartin writes, the powerless stand little chance before the forces of entrenched power. 

In early June, the Kalmanovitz Initiative for Labor and the Working Poor, which McCartin leads, will bring together people from unions, think tanks, faith communities, academia, and advocacy organizations to develop that vision.

Working-Class Studies Association Logo Contest

Calling all Working-Class Artists! Our logo contest is still running.

Contest Rules: Please submit a 1280 x 1280 pixels image of your WCSA logo design as a png, jpeg, and pdf. Provide your contact information so we can follow up with you if awarded. If you’d like to collaborate, this is welcomed. In the case of it, prize money will be split between the winning group members. The contest winner(s) agrees to share their design for WCSA use across its platforms indefinitely.

Deadline for submissions: June 15, 2022. Awardees will be announced soon after. Contest award: 500 US dollars. Make your submissions here.



The conference is ONE MONTH away! If you are planning on coming, please register as soon as you can! It is important for us to have a reliable headcount as we make the final arrangements for our first live conference since 2019. We particularly need those attending the banquet to purchase their banquet ticket in advance, as we will be sending each ticket holder a short survey about menu choice and dietary restrictions very soon. Same day registration is significantly higher than the current pre-registration rate!

You can register here. For more information about the conference head on over to our website here. And just in case you haven’t heard, this year’s conference also has a Zoom track.

WCSA 2022 Conference Zoom track

Can’t Attend the ’22 WCSA Conference in Person? No problem! Register to participate online via Zoom in a parallel track of speaker-panels: Take a look at the Conference Program to see them listed. In addition to these panels, Zoom participants will also have access to plenaries, the business meeting, and the awards ceremony. Registration for WCSA members who join via Zoom is $50 US dollars. Registrants will be sent an access code/Zoom invite at the start of the Conference.

Reminder! Nominations Open for WCSA Officers

Nominations for WCSA officers are now open.  We need nominees for the following positions for the 2022-23 year:

  • President-Elect (3-year cycle through President and Past President)
  • Secretary (2-year term)
  • Two at-large members of the Executive Committee (2-year terms)
  • Chair-Elect of Working-Class Academics Section (2-year cycle through Chair)
  • One member of the Elections Committee (3-year term)

Self-nominations are most welcome.  For descriptions of each position, see “V. Responsibility of Officers” in our Constitutional bylaws (pdf).  Send nominations to the Chair of the Elections Committee, Jill Ann Harrison at  If self-nominating, please send a brief bio that can be circulated during the election.  If nominating someone else, please include an email address so we can contact that person. 

Nominations will remain open through the Business Meeting at our Conference June 20-23, 2022 at Oregon State University and over Zoom. This meeting will be conducted on-ground and via Zoom. Don’t miss it! And please act now if you are willing to serve or know someone who is.

‘Bobbi the Girl’ By Jenifer Rae Vernon

Bobbi the Girl as read by the Author

Bobbi the Girl

wakes at four thirty and has some time
to drink her coffee and have a f*&king cigarette
before she has to be on the job with these assholes

she chops potatoes and peels carrots
and puts a roast in the crockpot
so it will smell good when she comes home

and they’ll have dinner ready when she’s dead
after the work, and her husband on pain killers
and back broke in bed all day can’t do nothing anyway

cleaning his f*&king bed pan and trying to get him
comfortable in his condition, what it must have been like
when they fell for each other and got together

it was before my time of knowing her
a woman impervious on construction site to bullet eyes
and sexist rants, she shredded the men

in acid taunts and cuss chains that withered the meaty
like salt on slugs, she small-sized still could holler
at me, get your young ass over here at the time

and costs more if you watch to the guys when we were high on ladders
and mother f*&ker c*&k sucker when something’s
irritating, said loud like cloud she made a bottom up

weather system of curse word propelled protection
so we could work, alongside Animal Man and Road Kill
and any other number of 100 white men vs the two of us

Bobbi the Woman, here’s to your Work
and for making it easier for the rest of us
in the world of construction

Jenifer Rae Vernon, photo by Alex Zenner, American River, Rancho Cordova, Calif., 2020.

Jenifer Rae Vernon, grew up in a small town and a big blue-collar family in Washington state. She worked seven years in drywall and paint and went from a GED to a PhD. Today she lives with her little family in northeast California and teaches full-time at a community college. She was awarded a Tillie Olsen for her book of poetry, Rock Candy, West End press.

*Image, Bianca Consantin, Unsplash.

Member Feature – WCSA President Joe Varga

See our WCSA president, Joe Varga, featured here!

An academic and activist home
Breaching our walls and comfort zones

To be featured in a future spotlight, please fill out the “WCSA Member Highlight Form,” on the bottom of our LinkTree. Use a Gmail account to login and complete the form. Reach out to us at with any questions and please write “member highlight” in the subject line.

WCSA Logo Contest Announcement


Are you inspired to art-up our logo? Do you have some pizzazz to add? We are on the hunt for a new logo. For more information & to make a submission for a chance to win $500 visit us here.

𝘾𝙡𝙤𝙨𝙞𝙣𝙜 𝘿𝙖𝙩𝙚: 𝙅𝙪𝙣𝙚 15𝙩𝙝 2022

Call for Submissions on Music and Class

The Journal of Working-Class Studies seeks submissions for the December 2022 issue exploring popular music and class from a global perspective. The Journal is an “open-access” (free for readers) academic publication that grew out of the Working-Class Studies Association and now has its own platform. Every issue is a celebration for us!

The Journal invites papers that consider (but are not limited to) the following questions:

How is popular music classed?

Does social class have an impact on the types of music created and consumed?

How do popular music artists navigate their way through classed structures – are there now less opportunities for working-class artists to break through the class ceiling?

How have working-class people engaged with popular music (as fans or artists)?

The deadline for submissions is August 31st, 2022.

Please see the Journal’s website for information about submissions and a contact email for queries.

Photo is licensed as Creative Commons and credited to Chris Hawes.