"A Renegade Union Interracial Organizing and Labor Radicalism"

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syndicalist
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Jan 14 2013 04:16
"A Renegade Union Interracial Organizing and Labor Radicalism"

Looks like an interesting enough book on this NYC-based left-progressive trade union. I was a member of one the Garment Locals in the early 1980s.

By no stretch a revolutionary union, but one which certainly fought some good fights.

A Renegade Union
Interracial Organizing and Labor Radicalism
Organizing the "unorganizable"

From the publishers press release:

Quote:
Dedicated to organizing workers from diverse racial, ethnic, and religious backgrounds, many of whom were considered "unorganizable" by other unions, the progressive New York City–based labor union District 65 counted among its 30,000 members retail clerks, office workers, warehouse workers, and wholesale workers. In this book, Lisa Phillips presents a distinctive study of District 65 and its efforts to secure economic equality for minority workers in sales and processing jobs in small, low-end shops and warehouses throughout the city. Phillips shows how organizers fought tirelessly to achieve better hours and higher wages for "unskilled," unrepresented workers and to destigmatize the kind of work they performed.

Closely examining the strategies employed by District 65 from the 1930s through the early Cold War years, Phillips assesses the impact of the McCarthy era on the union's quest for economic equality across divisions of race, ethnicity, and skill. Though their stories have been overshadowed by those of auto, steel, and electrical workers who forced American manufacturing giants to unionize, the District 65 workers believed their union provided them with an opportunity to re-value their work, the result of an economy inclining toward fewer manufacturing jobs and more low-wage service and processing jobs.

Phillips recounts how District 65 first broke with the CIO over the latter's hostility to left-oriented politics and organizing agendas, then rejoined to facilitate alliances with the NAACP. In telling the story of District 65 and detailing community organizing efforts during the first part of the Cold War and under the AFL-CIO umbrella, A Renegade Union continues to revise the history of the left-led unions of the Congress of Industrial Organizations.

"A Renegade Union deepens our understanding of how left-led unions in the mid-twentieth century distinguished themselves from other unions, and helps us see the possibilities for social movement unionism. Lisa Phillips's well-told story of District 65 will be welcomed by labor historians, civil rights scholars, labor activists, and interested general readers."--Rosemary Feurer, author of Radical Unionism in the Midwest, 1900–1950

Lisa Phillips is an assistant professor of history at Indiana State University.

http://www.press.uillinois.edu/books/catalog/95hxf6ke9780252037320.html

syndicalist
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Aug 3 2019 20:32

Has anyone read this book? I'm still waiting for a inexpensive copy to become available. I am a former member of this union.

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Sike
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Aug 4 2019 18:40

I've not read it but if your into reading e-books it's available as a download on Google Play for 10 USD.

And if that's still too expensive I've read that one can sometimes find e-books for much less here.

syndicalist
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Aug 5 2019 15:01
Sike wrote:
I've not read it but if your into reading e-books it's available as a download on Google Play for 10 USD.

And if that's still too expensive I've read that one can sometimes find e-books for much less here.

Thanks. I have problems reading books on my computer. Prefer physical, printed books.

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Sike
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Aug 5 2019 21:15

Your welcome.

When reading I'm quite the opposite and find it much easier to read on a computer screen than on printed paper. Probably has to do with the fact that I've avoided getting a pair of reading glasses despite my not having young eyes anymore.