"Negro and White, Unite and Fight!"
A Social History of Industrial Unionism in Meatpacking, 1930-90
This pathbreaking study traces the rise--and subsequent fall--of the United Packinghouse Workers of America (UPWA). Roger Horowitz emphasizes local leaders and meatpacking workers in Chicago, Kansas City, Sioux City, and Austin, Minnesota, and closely examines the unionizing of the workplace and the prominent role of black workers and women in UPWA.
In clear, anecdotal style, Horowitz shows how three major firms in U.S. meat production and distribution became dominant by virtually eliminating union power. The union's decline, he argues, reflected massive pressure by capital for lower labor costs and greater control over the work process. In the end, the victorious firms were those that had been most successful at increasing the rate of exploitation of their workers, who now labor in conditions as bad as those of a century ago.
"The definitive study of unionism in the meatpacking industry for the period since the 1920's." -- James R. Barrett, author of Work and Community in the Jungle: Chicago's Packinghouse Workers, 1894-1922
A volume in the series The Working Class in American History, edited by David Brody, Alice Kessler-Harris, David Montgomery, and Sean Wilentz
Supported by the Illinois Labor History Society
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(800) 621-2736 (USA/Canada)
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