Changing Patterns of Industrial Conflict

Changing Patterns of Industrial Conflict

Changing Patterns of Industrial Conflict

Changing Patterns of Industrial Conflict

Excerpt

The year 1959 was a banner year for industrial conflict in the United States. There have been more man-days of idleness because of strikes than in any previous year in our recorded history, with the exception of 1946. Although the steel strike is chiefly responsible, large and prolonged stoppages have also occurred in the longshore, rubber, and meatpacking industries, as well as in more localized activities such as newspapers and trucking.

The 1959 experience has been encountered at the end of a twelve-year period during which strains on the collective bargaining system have been moderate, emergency disputes have been infrequent, and strike activity has been diminishing. Has there been an important reversal in the trend, or does the eruption of industrial conflict in 1959 merely reflect the concurrence of various circumstances which have temporarily impeded collective bargaining?

Certainly it is too early to offer any confident reply. We may gain some perspective, however, by examining the drift of industrial disputes in this country over a longer period of about six decades. A description of the union policies, employer practices, and government programs which influence the volume of strike activity in the United States may also be instructive.

In this volume we analyze national trends and international differences in strike activity in fifteen countries of North America, Europe, Asia . . .

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