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Where Are the Unions? Workers and Social Movements in Latin America, the Middle East, and Europe ed. by Sian Lazar

Where Are the Unions? Workers and Social Movements in Latin America, the Middle East, and Europe... Where Are the Unions? Workers and Social Movements in Latin America, the Middle East, and Europe Sian Lazar, ed. London: Zed, 2017 296 pp., $95.00 (cloth); $29.95 (paper) In the numerous studies of early twenty- firs t- century protest movements, the role of labor is often ignored. The reasons are many: the fascination with “new” social movements and subjects, the prevalence of ideologies that downplay the importance of class in peo- ple’s lives, and justie fi d disenchantment with bureaucratic union leaders, to name a few. Much commentary on recent social movements also depicts them as spontaneous and leaderless uprisings in which social media substitutes for organization. The result is that “organised class- based resistance to capitalism has slipped out of view in both scholarly work and political commentary,” as Sian Lazar notes in her introduction to this ambi- tious anthology (8). The volume includes case studies from eleven different countries, focusing on recent labor movements and their proximate historical roots over the last two decades. A central theme is the wide diversity of labor’s political positions and roles. Many unions have responded to neoliberal austerity, repression, and xenophobia by “closing in on them- selves and becoming less and http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Labor Duke University Press

Where Are the Unions? Workers and Social Movements in Latin America, the Middle East, and Europe ed. by Sian Lazar

Labor , Volume 15 (3) – Sep 1, 2018

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Copyright
Copyright © 2018 Labor and Working-Class History Association
ISSN
1547-6715
eISSN
1558-1454
DOI
10.1215/15476715-6910417
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Where Are the Unions? Workers and Social Movements in Latin America, the Middle East, and Europe Sian Lazar, ed. London: Zed, 2017 296 pp., $95.00 (cloth); $29.95 (paper) In the numerous studies of early twenty- firs t- century protest movements, the role of labor is often ignored. The reasons are many: the fascination with “new” social movements and subjects, the prevalence of ideologies that downplay the importance of class in peo- ple’s lives, and justie fi d disenchantment with bureaucratic union leaders, to name a few. Much commentary on recent social movements also depicts them as spontaneous and leaderless uprisings in which social media substitutes for organization. The result is that “organised class- based resistance to capitalism has slipped out of view in both scholarly work and political commentary,” as Sian Lazar notes in her introduction to this ambi- tious anthology (8). The volume includes case studies from eleven different countries, focusing on recent labor movements and their proximate historical roots over the last two decades. A central theme is the wide diversity of labor’s political positions and roles. Many unions have responded to neoliberal austerity, repression, and xenophobia by “closing in on them- selves and becoming less and

Journal

LaborDuke University Press

Published: Sep 1, 2018

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