The Wobblies: The Story of the IWW and Syndicalism in the United States – Patrick Renshaw

“Declaring, ​an injury to one is an injury to all,’ the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW) upended and forever changed the labor movement a little over a century ago. The Wobblies’ commitment to organizing workers on an industry-wide basis, their cynicism about legislative action and electoral politics, their aversion to signed contracts and their preference for sudden strikes remain fascinating subjects for labor studies. Their multiculturalism, anti-racism and pioneering bohemian approach to God, country and sex remain a rich vein to be mined for cultural studies. Although there is no shortage of books about the history of the IWW, they mostly tell the story of a North American union and revolutionary movement. But naming themselves the Industrial Workers of the World was no mere rhetorical flourish. The globalism implied in their name is fleshed out in a new book, Wobblies of the World: A Global History of the IWW, edited by In These Times contributor Peter Cole, along with David Struthers and Kenyon Zimmer. In American parlance, the national bodies that connect our local unions are typically referred to as ​international’ unions, which basically means that they have a couple of locals in Canada. That’s what the ​I’ usually stands for in a union’s acronym. Landing on the ​of the World’ part of its name in 1905 was a conscious act of internationalism by a founding convention delegation that contained no small number of immigrants. Significantly, prewar immigration didn’t require nearly as much paperwork, and a worker might call several countries ​home’ while chasing transplant jobs in that earlier era of globalization. Globetrotting workers both imported new ideas and tactics to the IWW and exported the Wobbly gospel. The papers that are collected in Wobblies of the World explore both dynamics. …”
In These Times: The Untold Story of How Immigrants Turned the Wobblies into a Global Force
The Nation: We Can Thank the Wobblies for the Biggest Labor Story of the Year
amazon: The Wobblies: The Story of the IWW and Syndicalism in the United States, Wobblies!: A Graphic History of the Industrial Workers of the World

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