United Farmworkers Poster

Grade Range: K-12
Resource Type(s): Artifacts, Primary Sources
Date Posted: 9/3/2008

Cesar Estrada Chavez, the founder of the United Farm Workers of America, is one of the most recognized Latino civil rights leaders in the United States. A Mexican American born in Yuma, Arizona, his family lost their small farm in the Great Depression (1930s). Like many Americans, they joined the migration to California and worked for low wages in its great agricultural fields. The agricultural industry in the West was a modern, market-driven phenomenon. In 1965, the United Farm Workers of America, led by Cesar Chavez and Dolores Huerta, began its five-year Delano grape strike against area grape growers for equal wages for foreign workers. Filipino and Mexican Americans who labored in California vineyards were suddenly visible in the eyes of American consumers. The movement to boycott table grapes mobilized students and educated consumers across America. The text on this poster, printed around 1970, describes Chavez's vision of political and economic emancipation for farm workers. La Causa, or The Cause, as it was known among Mexican Americans, was the political and artistic touchstone of the Chicano movement.

Use this Investigation Sheet to guide students through describing the object and analyzing its meaning.