The Future of the American Labor Movement / Edition 1

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Coming at a time of profound change in the global conditions under which American organized labor exists, The Future of the American Labor Movement describes and analyzes labor's strategic alternatives. It casts its net broadly, taking into account ideas that range from the current European Social Dialogue to the methods of the nineteenth Century American Knights of Labor. There are a number of intriguing strategies that have potential for reviving the U.S. labor movement, of which worker ownership and labor capital strategies are examples. There is a necessity for a number of diverse strategies to be pursued simultaneously. For this to work, there has to be a a broad movement of labor, consisting of diverse parts, held together by a clear idea of its purpose and a new structure. Hoyt N. Wheeler is Professor of Management and Chair, Management Department, Moore School of Business, University of South Carolina. Wheeler is a former president of the Industrial Relations Research Association, and editor of its magazine Perspectives on Work. He has won teaching awards at the University of Minnesota and at the University of South Carolina. His publications include Industrial Conflict: An Integrative Theory (South Carolina, 1985), which was a Choice magazine as a Outstanding Academic title, and Workplace Justice: Employment Justice in International Perspective (co-editor, Flower, 1994). Wheeler is an attorney specializing in labor law, and labor relations arbitrator and a member of the National Academy of Arbitrators.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"From the introduction by Lynn Williams, former President of the United Steelworkers, to the final interview with John Sweeney, current President of the AFL-CIO, we are given a sweeping picture of U.S. labor's past, present—and the possibilities for the future. The nation needs a healthier labor movement and this book may help us there." Paul Simon, Former U.S. Senator (D), Illinois

"For the sake of our democracy, America needs to rebuild its labor movement. Hoyt Wheeler conveys this message with conviction and thorough analysis and offers a vision of a future labor movement that would indeed strengthen our democracy. Realizing this vision will require trial and error experimentation with alternative strategies and forms of representation involving labor leaders, academics, policy makers, and the public. Americaas thought and action leaders should read this compelling book and commit to doing their part in meeting this challenge." Thomas A. Kochan, Sloan School of Management, MIT

"Hoyt Wheeler's far-ranging and engaging volume contains information on diverse types of employee organizations and different union strategies. Employee ownership with union involvement, regional economic development, strategies undertaken by unions, Social Democratic initiatives, and even the Knights of Labor are all highlighted. Wheeler's analysis of what the Carolina Alliance for Fair Employment has tried, and has accomplished, is particularly valuable. Union activists and intellectuals will both find this book to be a smorgasbord of innovative, yet grounded, ideas for labor's revitalization." Paula B. Voos, Rutgers University

"Professor Wheeler's new book on the future of the American labor movement is an important work. It is first a thoughtful and in-depth analysis of the issues that the American labor movement has to face today, the evolution which drove it to its present condition and an evaluation of the alternative paths opened from there. But it is also much more than that. Its scope also is not limited to America, for it places the American labor movement within a bigger picture, drawing on the deep and elaborate knowledge of the European labor movements by the author. Its reader should not include only specialists in industrial relations for it has a broader appeal, framing the issues in larger social terms which should be of concern to all those with an interest in the role an representation of labor in the productive system." Jacques Rojot, University of Paris 1, Panthéon-Sorbonne

"Futurists intent on improving their grasp of our economic and social realities will find this evenhanded, engaging, and forecast-savvy volume well worth reading, as the stakes could not be higher." Futurist

"A thoughtful and in-depth examination for everyone interested in workers and unions." Futurist

"...excellent..." Citizen Times

"....The Future of the American Labor Movement will help scholars and practitioners who seek a wide-angle lens on the labor movement and a comprehensive menu of options for action. This book might be thought of as a guidebook to today's labor movement, with narrative fragments and nuggets of insight that raise more questions than they answer." Industrial & Labor Relation Review

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521893541
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 2/28/2013
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 278
  • Product dimensions: 5.98 (w) x 8.98 (h) x 0.59 (d)

Table of Contents

Foreword; Introduction Lynn S. Williams; 1. A future for the American labor movement?; 2. Industrial relations in a time of change; 3. A survey of American union strategies; 4. The old reformist unionism: the noble order of the Knights of Labor; 5. The new reformist unionism: CAFE; 6. A new version of an old reformist strategy: employee ownership; 7. Social democratic unionism in action: strategies of European trade unions; 8. A new twist and turn on social democratic unionism: regional economic development; 9. A labor movement for the 21st century; Appendix; Interview with John J. Sweeney, President, AFL-CIO.

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