Employment of the Weak: The Role of a Multinational Factory in the Life Trajectory of Early School Leavers in Sāmoa

dc.contributor.author Levi, Masami Tsujita en_US
dc.date.accessioned 2020-11-05T18:19:36Z
dc.date.available 2020-11-05T18:19:36Z
dc.date.issued 2019 en_US
dc.description.abstract Yazaki Electrical Distribution System Sāmoa (YES), a Japan-based car parts factory, ceased its operations in Sāmoa in August 2017 as a result of an Australian government decision to stop subsidizing the automotive industry. YES's closure was a classic example of the flow-on effects of changes in global supply chains and illustrates how the neoliberal economy has undermined the circumstances of workers in developed and developing countries. This study, however, offers an alternative perspective. It explores the meaning of the factory closure from the standpoint of young workers in Sāmoa. I collected their stories and voices primarily through direct observations and conversations with them while working at yes as part of the management team for six years. During the company’s twenty-six years of operations, YES employed over sixty thousand local workers, predominantly young early school leavers. These youth sought employment at yes because, unlike most other jobs, the company offered job opportunities for school leavers without education qualifications or specialized experience. This study examines what the loss of this multinational factory meant to its young workers. It portrays the everyday world of shop-floor operators and describes how their factory employment contributed to their lives. I argue that from the perspective of YES operators, despite the admittedly exploitative nature of their operations, multinational factories can be seen as sites for self-empowerment. Factory employment provided increased opportunities for less powerful members of Samoan society who otherwise had very limited prospects to develop confidence in themselves and earn money and status in their families, their villages, and the workplace. en_US
dc.format.extent 30 pages en_US
dc.identifier.citation Levi, M. T. 2019. Employment of the Weak: The Role of a Multinational Factory in the Life Trajectory of Early School Leavers in Sāmoa. The Contemporary Pacific 31 (2): 417–446. en_US
dc.identifier.issn 1043-898X en_US
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/10125/70257
dc.publisher University of Hawai‘i Press en_US
dc.publisher Center for Pacific Islands Studies en_US
dc.subject Sāmoa en_US
dc.subject multinational corporations en_US
dc.subject factory employment en_US
dc.subject early school leavers en_US
dc.subject weapons of the weak en_US
dc.subject agency en_US
dc.subject empowerment en_US
dc.subject.lcsh Oceania -- Periodicals en_US
dc.title Employment of the Weak: The Role of a Multinational Factory in the Life Trajectory of Early School Leavers in Sāmoa en_US
dc.type Article en_US
dc.type.dcmi Text en_US
Files
Original bundle
Now showing 1 - 1 of 1
No Thumbnail Available
Name:
v31n2-417-446.pdf
Size:
361.94 KB
Format:
Adobe Portable Document Format
Description: