The Master of Seventh Avenue: David Dubinsky and the American Labor Movement

Overview

The Master of Seventh Avenue is the definitive biography of David Dubinsky, one of the most controversial and influential labor leaders in 20th-century America. A “character” in the truest sense of the word, Robert D. Parmet reveals that Dubinsky was both revered and reviled, but never dull, conformist, or bound by convention. A Jewish labor radical, Dubinsky became president of the International Ladies’ Garment Workers’ Union (ILGWU) in 1932 and went on to lead it for thirty-four years. Dubinsky famously ...

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The Master of Seventh Avenue: David Dubinsky and the American Labor Movement

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Overview

The Master of Seventh Avenue is the definitive biography of David Dubinsky, one of the most controversial and influential labor leaders in 20th-century America. A “character” in the truest sense of the word, Robert D. Parmet reveals that Dubinsky was both revered and reviled, but never dull, conformist, or bound by convention. A Jewish labor radical, Dubinsky became president of the International Ladies’ Garment Workers’ Union (ILGWU) in 1932 and went on to lead it for thirty-four years. Dubinsky famously championed “social unionism,” which offered workers benefits ranging from health care to housing.

Dubinsky's boundless energy was not limited solely to labor, and The Master of Seventh Avenue chronicles the activist’s influential role as in local, national, and international politics. An extraordinary personality whose life and times present a fascinating lens into the American labor movement, Dubinsky leaps off of the pages of Parmet’s meticulously-researched and vividly-detailed biography.

The paperback edition of The Master of Seventh Avenue: David Dubinsky and the American Labor Movement was made possible with the generous support of the 21st Century ILGWU Heritage Fund.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

“Superb...this study is destined to be the authoritative work on Dubinsky’s career. Parmet’s balanced assessment of his subject, combined with the breadth of his research and the skillful writing, make this an exemplary biography.” -American Historical Review,

"[Parmet's] biography has put Dubinsky back on the historical map and is a must read for historians."
-The Journal of American History,

“This volume, which contains an eight-page photo section, will appeal to labor history scholars and biography enthusiasts.”-CHOICE, recommended,

“Parmet's work will surely have an honored place on the shelves of Cornell University's Kheel Labor Center, as has an earlier work, David Dubinsky: A Life with Labor, co-authored by Dubinsky himself and A.H. Raskin, one of the New York Times's famed labor reporters.” -The Weekly Standard,

The Master of Seventh Avenue explores the life of David Dubinsky, an East European Jewish immigrant who grew up with the ILGWU. One of the most forceful labor leaders of the twentieth century, Dubinsky also pioneered in the civil rights movement, actively involved his union in domestic politics, and fought vigorously for all workers in the international sphere. One of the most forceful labor leaders of the twentieth century, Dubinsky also pioneered in the civil rights movement, actively involved his union in domestic politics, and fought vigorously for all workers in the international sphere. Parading across the pages of this insightful and colorful biography are men like, George Meany, Sidney Hillman, John L. Lewis, Fiorello LaGuardia, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Harry S Truman, John F. Kennedy, Arthur Goldberg, and Adlai Stevenson. Parmet examines the work of labor leaders and politicians from the inside out. It is certainly a sight worth viewing.” -Leonard Dinnerstein,author of Antisemitism in America

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780814770368
  • Publisher: New York University Press
  • Publication date: 9/1/2012
  • Pages: 436
  • Product dimensions: 8.80 (w) x 6.00 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Robert D. Parmet is professor of history at York College of The City University of New York. He is the author of Labor and Immigration in Industrial America and Town and Gown: The Fight for Social Justice, Urban Rebirth, and Higher Education, and co-author of American Nativism, 1830-1860.

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Table of Contents

Preface ix

Introduction 1

1 Escape from Czarism 4

2 East Side Socialist 13

3 At War within the ILGWU 31

4 Second in Command 54

5 Acting President 66

6 Dubinsky's Union 81

7 A World of Conflict 94

8 Fast Company 107

9 Beyond the Blue Eagle 113

10 Industrial Unionism and Labor Politics 121

11 An Independent Spirit 141

12 Allies and Adversaries 153

13 Home at Last 178

14 War on Two Fronts 188

15 Cold War Liberal 206

16 Labor Statesman 243

17 Riding High at Home and Abroad 258

18 Trouble on Seventh Avenue 270

19 End of an Era 296

20 Honorary President 326

Notes 343

Index 405

About the Author 436

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