Unity and Diversity in European Labor: An Introduction to Contemporary Labor Movements

Unity and Diversity in European Labor: An Introduction to Contemporary Labor Movements

Unity and Diversity in European Labor: An Introduction to Contemporary Labor Movements

Unity and Diversity in European Labor: An Introduction to Contemporary Labor Movements

Excerpt

Research and teaching of international labor problems have for a long time been curiously neglected in the United States. The number of publications and of college or university courses in this field has been exceedingly small. Attention has been almost exclusively focused on domestic labor problems, which indeed offered ample opportunity for research and teaching.

Yet important branches of the social sciences could obviously profit a good deal from a better knowledge of foreign labor movements, labor problems abroad, attempted solutions, and their results. To mention only two disciplines of the social sciences that immediately come to mind: the study of international relations and of economics -- particularly, but not exclusively, labor economics.

At a time when governments and parties intimately connected with the labor movement dominate the political scene or, at least, are major factors in world political developments, the study of foreign labor movements is an indispensable prerequisite to an understanding of international affairs. Bolshevism, after all, was at least related to the rise of the Russian labor movement-if not a part or one aspect of itand to follow the evolution of Bolshevik thinking is clearly impossible without intimate acquaintance with the Russian labor movement. At least one of the major issues -- perhaps the decisive issue in Western Europe -- in the struggle between . . .

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