While workers movements have been largely phased out and considered out-dated in most parts of the world during the 1990s, the 21st century has seen a surge in new and unprecedented forms of strikes and workers organisations.
The collection of essays in this book, spanning countries across global South and North, provides an account of strikes and working class resistance in the 21st century. Through original case studies, the book looks at the various shades of workers’ movements, analysing different forms of popular organisation as responses to new social and economic conditions, such as restructuring of work and new areas of investment.
Introduction: The New Upsurge of Strikes in the Early 21st Century – Tendencies, Challenges and Limits, Jörg Nowak, Peter Birke and Madhumita Dutta / 1. Labour Strikes in Post-Authoritarian Indonesia, 1998-2013, Fahmi Panimbang and Abu Mufakhir / 2. Space and Strike Diffusion in a Decentralized Authoritarian Country: A Study of the Auto Parts Industry in South China, Deng Yunxue / 3. Strikes in Vietnam, Mark Anner / 4. Making Sense of Legality: Everyday Resistance and Survival Tactics by Undocumented Indian Female Domestic Workers in the United Arabic Emirates, Bindhulakshmi Pattadath / 5. Against All Odds: Tracing the Struggles of Workers to Form a Union Inside a Special Economic Zone in Tamil Nadu, India, Madhumita Dutta / 6. Mass Strikes in the Brazilian Construction Sector Between 2011 and 2014, Jörg Nowak / 7. Conflicts Around Subcontracted Workers in Chile’s Copper Mining Sector, Antonio Aravena and Mauricio Muñoz / 8. The United States: Worker Agency and Innovation in the Midst of Crisis, Dave Kamper / 9. Strike Movements and Popular Class Struggles in Burkina Faso, Bettina Engels / 10. Mass Strikes in Nigeria, 2000–2015: Struggling Against Neoliberal Hegemony, Femi Aborisade and Drew Povey / 11. Strikes, Bread Riots and Blockades: Mozambican Workers and Communities in Resistance, Judith Marshall / 12. The Strike Wave of 2015 in Germany, Peter Birke / 13. The Politics of Striking: On the Shifting Dynamics of Workers’ Struggles in Britain, Alexander Gallas / 14. Austerity and Labour Resistance: The Shifting Shape of Strikes in Spain, Nikolai Huke and Olaf Tietje / 15. Gender and Precarity in Crisis-ridden Greece, Anna Koumandaraki and Athanasios Tsakiris / 16. The Strike Movement and Labour Protests in Russia, Elena Gerasimova and Petr Bizyukov / Index / About the Contributors
How to analyse the wave of strikes occurring around the world in the early 21st century? What are their causes, forms, and results – and what do they reveal about specific socioeconomic constellations? Is there potential for solidarity among workers in different world regions, based, for instance, on similar policies of informalisation? This volume is a perfect starting point for discussion.
This book will certainly be a global reference in the studies on the new trends of workers' resistance struggles in the face of current forms of capitalist accumulation. It offers a fantastic panorama of strikes and other forms of workers fighting in a wide range of countries in all regions of the world. It has the merit of highlighting the recent phenomenon of a world wide resurgence of workers' strikes.
This book is a powerful reminder of the continuing widespread resistance to capitalism despite the global economic crisis. Bringing together a large amount of studies from Asia, the Americas, Africa and Europe, including less well-researched countries such as Indonesia and Burkina Faso, the authors emphasise the new dynamics of class struggle across the globe. A must-read for everyone interested in resisting exploitation and transforming capitalism!
This edited volume on labour strikes covering working class struggles in Asia, Africa and Latin America is a pioneering attempt in the area of labour studies. Re-politicizing labour strikes on a global scale is a timely project that this volume strives to achieve. Readers of labour studies, social movements and social change should definitely pay attention to it.
Encouraging, honest and meticulously researched, this book is a good starting point for anyone wanting to understand the motivations, strategies, objectives and potential of working class struggle around the planet.
Madhumita Dutta is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Geography at the Ohio State University, USA.
Jörg Nowak is a Marie Curie Researcher at the School of Politics and International Relations at the University of Nottingham, UK.
Peter Birke is Researcher at the Sociological Research Institute Göttingen (SOFI), at the University of Göttingen, Germany. He has published more specifically on the global social movements after the 2009 financial and debt crisis. Birke is editor of the journal Social History Online.