workers' rights

By Kim Moody

March 26, 2021 — Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal reposted from NewPolitics — The working class of the twenty-first century is a class in formation, as one would expect in a world where capitalism has only recently become universal. At the same time, Marx himself reminded us long ago, in speaking of the development of classes in England where they were “most classically developed,” that “even here, though, this class articulation does not emerge in pure form.”1 The working class, of course, is much broader than those who are employed at any one time. Relying only on workforce figures obscures important aspects of the broader working-class life, including its reproduction. Nevertheless, those in and out of employment form the core of the working class, once seen as a male domain but today nearly half composed of women. Furthermore, both space and research limitations dictate that this article will focus on the employed and near-employed sections of this global class. With these caveats in mind, we look first at the growth of the global working-class labor force in the twenty-first century.

This chapter is taken from An Alternative Labour History: Worker Control and Workplace Democracy, edited by Dario Azzellini and published by Zed Books. For more of Azzellini’s writings visit his website By Dario Azzellini July 31, 2016 -- Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal -- During the first decade of the current century factory occupations and production under workers’ control seemed to be limited mainly to South America, with a few exceptions in Asia. It was beyond the imagination of most workers and scholars in industrialized countries that workers would or could occupy their companies and run them on their own. Nevertheless, the crisis that started in 2008 put workers’ control back on the agenda in the northern hemisphere. Occupations of workplaces and production under control of workers sprang up in the United States, Western Europe and Egypt. This chapter describes some of these struggles and their common characteristics and differences.
Verizon workers on strike in Washington, DC in August 2011