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Rethinking Global Labour
After Neoliberalism

Ronaldo Munck

£60.00 | $90.00
ISBN 9781788211048
£19.99 | $30.00
ISBN 9781788211055
£19.99 | $30.00
ISBN 9781788211062
288 pages | 234 x 156mm | September 2018
Series: Building Progressive Alternatives


"A wide-ranging, multidimensional, and thoughtful discussion of the future for the workers of the world." – Goran Therborn, University of Cambridge


Work makes the world go around, not money.

Up to a decade ago, many labour movement analysts would probably have thought that we are witnessing the beginning of the end of organized labour as a major political force. But there is now a feeling across the political spectrum that capitalism, post-financial crisis, and the forces of globalization it nurtures are in decline and that the labour movement has regained some ground. The premise of this book is that we are at the beginning of a new era for workers and their organizations, in which they will begin to impact decisively on the new global order that they have helped to create through their labour.

Ronaldo Munck offers a sober appraisal of how globalization has created a new global working class through the massive acceleration of capital accumulation and, concomitantly, increased the insecurity and precarious nature of most employment. The so-called "precariat" may be seen as a novel and threatening idea for the northern hemisphere, but for workers of the South this is what might be deemed the default condition. Munck suggests that we are now moving beyond categories of North and South as workers of the world share the impacts of global capitalism and the lessons to be learnt. And it is this new global class of workers that lies at the heart of the future globalization project and its possible alternatives, such as the "decent work" agenda of official institutions and the "social movement unionism" articulated by the alter-globalization movements. In some ways the book poses a "return to the future" drawing parallels with the birth of the labour and democratic movements before the consolidation of nation states.


Introduction: the issues

Part I: History of labour
1. Labour and capitalism
2. The golden era
3. The era of globalization

Part II: Development of a global working class
4. Workers North
5. Workers South
6. Global precariat

Part III: New challenges for global labour
7. Migrant labour
8. Labour and its Others
9. Labour internationalism
Conclusion: possible futures

Author Information

Ronaldo Munck is Head of Civic Engagement at Dublin City University and a Visiting Professor of International Development at the University of Liverpool and St. Mary's University, Nova Scotia. He has authored or edited more than 30 books on various topics related to globalization, international development and social movements, including Contemporary Latin America (third edition 2012) and, most recently, Marx 2020: After the Crisis (2016).

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