Working Together: How Workplace Bonds Strengthen a Diverse Democracy

Working Together: How Workplace Bonds Strengthen a Diverse Democracy

by Cynthia Estlund
     
 

ISBN-10: 0195158288

ISBN-13: 9780195158281

Pub. Date: 10/28/2003

Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA

The typical workplace is a hotbed of human relationships -- of friendships, conflicts, feuds, alliances, partnerships, coexistence, and cooperation. Here, problems are solved, progress is made, and rifts are mended because they need to be -- because the work has to get done. And it has to get done among increasingly diverse groups of co-workers. At a time when…  See more details below

Overview

The typical workplace is a hotbed of human relationships -- of friendships, conflicts, feuds, alliances, partnerships, coexistence, and cooperation. Here, problems are solved, progress is made, and rifts are mended because they need to be -- because the work has to get done. And it has to get done among increasingly diverse groups of co-workers. At a time when communal ties in American society are increasingly frayed and segregation persists, the workplace is more than ever the site where Americans from different ethnic, religious, and racial backgrounds meet and forge serviceable and sometimes lasting bonds. What do these highly structured workplace relationships mean for a society still divided by gender and race? Structure and rules are, in fact, central to the answer. Workplace interactions are constrained by economic power and necessity, and often by legal regulation. They exist far from the civic ideal of free and equal citizens voluntarily associating for shared ends. Yet it is the very involuntariness of these interactions that helps to make the often-troubled project of racial integration comparatively successful at work. People can be forced to get along -- not without friction, but often with surprising success. This highly original exploration of the paradoxical nature -- and the paramount importance -- of workplace bonds concludes with concrete suggestions for how law can further realize the democratic possibilities of working together. In linking workplace integration and connectedness beyond work, Estlund suggests a novel and promising strategy for addressing the most profound challenges facing American society.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780195158281
Publisher:
Oxford University Press, USA
Publication date:
10/28/2003
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
256
Product dimensions:
9.30(w) x 6.00(h) x 0.80(d)
Lexile:
1600L (what's this?)

Table of Contents

1Introduction: Working Together3
Pt. IConnectedness and Diversity in the Contemporary Workplace
2Connectedness in the Workplace: A Sketch23
3From "the Workplace" to Workplaces: Variety and Change in the Organization of Work35
4Working Together Across Racial Lines: How Much Does It Happen and What Difference Does It Make?60
5Men and Women Working Together: Workplace Interaction Across Gender Lines (and Some Other Lines of Division)84
Pt. IIHow Workplace Bonds Enrich Democratic Life
6Situating the Workplace in Civil Society: Social Integration, Social Capital, and Deliberation at Work105
7Compulsion, Connectedness, and the Constitution of the Workplace125
Pt. IIIBuilding Better Workplace Bonds: Preliminary Thoughts on What Law Can Do
8Refining the "Equal Protection Clause" of the Workplace145
9Protecting Collective Voice and Promoting Cooperation in the Workplace162
10Conclusion177
Notes183
References219
Index235

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