The Transformation of U.S. Unions: Voices, Visions, and Strategies from the Grassroots

By Ray M. Tillman; Michael S. Cummings | Go to book overview

About the Book

What's wrong with U. S. unions, and what could make it right? These are the questions addressed by nineteen partisans—union dissidents and noted scholars—of union democracy. Agreeing that any long-term solutions must come from the grassroots of the union movement, they argue for expansion rather than contraction, militancy rather than accommodation, and internal democracy rather than oligarchy. To break the stranglehold of business, union, and government elites, they emphasize, ordinary workers must be energetically recruited and actively involved in the management of their unions.

Ray Tillman is president of the National Association of Letter Carriers Branch 642. Michael Cummings is chair of the Political Science Depart- ment at the University of Colorado at Denver.

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The Transformation of U.S. Unions: Voices, Visions, and Strategies from the Grassroots
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page *
  • Contents v
  • Introduction 1
  • Notes *
  • 1 - A New Labor Movement in the Shell of the Old? 9
  • 2 - A Rising Tide of Union Democracy 27
  • Notes *
  • 3 - The New Afl-Cio: No Salvation from on High for the Working Stiff 49
  • 4 - Labor:Turning the Corner Will Take More Than Mobilization 61
  • Notes *
  • 5 - Learning from the Past to Build the Future 87
  • 6 - The Dynamics of Change 97
  • Notes *
  • 7 - Unsung Heroes of Union Democracy: Rank-And-File Organizers 117
  • Notes *
  • 8 - Reform Movement in the Teamsters and United Auto Workers 137
  • Notes *
  • 9 - Hell on Wheels: Organizing Among New York City's Subway and Bus Workers 167
  • Notes *
  • 10 - The Local Union: a Rediscovered Frontier 191
  • 11 - Restructuring Labor's Identity: the Justice for Janitors Campaign in Washington, D. C. 203
  • Notes *
  • 12 - Lessons from the Umwa 219
  • Notes *
  • 13 - Cross-Border Alliances in the Era of Globalization 239
  • Notes *
  • 14 - A Strategic Organizing Alliance Across Borders 255
  • Notes *
  • Conclusion: Union Democracy and Social Unionism 267
  • Notes *
  • Selected Readings 275
  • The Contributors 279
  • Index 283
  • About the Book 297
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