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1 Burnside American Studies- Labor and Work

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Raising Expectations (and Raising Hell): My Decade Fighting for the Labor Movement

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Raising Expectations (and Raising Hell): My Decade Fighting for the Labor Movement Cover

ISBN13: 9781844678853
ISBN10: 1844678857
Condition: Standard
Dustjacket: Standard
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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

In 1995, in the first contested election in the history of the AFL-CIO, John Sweeney won the presidency of the nation’s largest labor federation, promising renewal and resurgence. Today, less than 7 percent of American private-sector workers belong to a union, the lowest percentage since the beginning of the twentieth century, and public employee collective bargaining has been dealt devastating blows in Wisconsin and elsewhere. What happened?

Jane McAlevey is famous—and notorious—in the American labor movement as the hard-charging organizer who racked up a string of victories at a time when union leaders said winning wasn’t possible. Then she was bounced from the movement, a victim of the high-level internecine warfare that has torn apart organized labor. In this engrossing and funny narrative—that reflects the personality of its charismatic, wisecracking author—McAlevey tells the story of a number of dramatic organizing and contract victories, and the unconventional strategies that helped achieve them.

Raising Expectations (and Raising Hell) argues that labor can be revived, but only if the movement acknowledges its mistakes and fully commits to deep organizing, participatory education, militancy, and an approach to workers and their communities that more resembles the campaigns of the 1930s—in short, social movement unionism that involves raising workers’ expectations (while raising hell).

Review:

"This rousing memoir of McAlevey's decade-long experience as a union organizer spares neither the companies nor the union bosses. After success as a union organizer of home health care workers in Stamford, Connecticut, McAlevey was sent to do the same in Pittsburgh. There she ran up against a union executive vice-president who effectively sabotaged her work. After another successful assignment, McAlevey headed for Las Vegas to organize employees of for-profit 'scumbag' hospitals where the hard work of getting decent contracts for nurses provides a roller coaster experience. She makes certain the reader learns how to organize; the fine points of agreements are dissected thoroughly, including how to keep union members in 'right to work' states. McAlevey is not afraid to name names, offering millionaire CEOs with government contacts their fair dose of scorn. But her strongest fury is with the union leadership who seem to thwart her at every turn. Politics and turf wars are a recurrent theme in this book, which result in the destruction of the health care workers union in Nevada and McAlevey's departure from union work. This is a passionate defense of her efforts and a plea for others to pick up the gauntlet for workers. (Nov.)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Synopsis:

A real-life Norma Rae on the catastrophic state of the American union movement.

Synopsis:

How one militant union organizer fought the bosses—and national labor leaders.

Synopsis:

Jane McAlevey has been an organizer in the labor and environmental justice movements for the last twenty years. She is a PhD candidate at CUNY Graduate Center and lives in the San Francsico Bay Area.

Bob Ostertag is the co-author of Raising Expectations (and Raising Hell) and author of People’s Movements, People’s Press: The Journalism of Social Justice Movements and Creative Life: Music, Politics, People, and Machines. He has also published two movies and over twenty CDs of music, and covered the Central American civil wars as a journalist. He currently teaches at UC Davis and lives in San Francisco.

Synopsis:

Only about 7.5 percent of American private-sector workers belong to a union, the lowest percentage since the beginning of the twentieth century,and public employee collective bargaining is under fire in Wisconsin,Ohio, and elsewhere. What happened to the US labor movement?

Jane McAlevey swept to fame—and notoriety—as the hard-charging “Hurricane Jane” who helped make Las Vegas one of the few labor success stories of recent years. Then she was bounced from the movement, a victim of the high-level internecine warfare that has torn apart organized labor. In an engrossing, suspenseful and funny narrative—that reflects the personality of its charismatic, intense and wise-cracking author—McAlevey tells the story of her amazing organizing victories and lifts the lid on the civil wars inside organized labor. Labor’s Last Stand unearths the reasons for the movement’s downfall and emphatically argues that labor can be revived.

About the Author

Jane McAlevey has been an organizer in the labor and environmental justice movements for the last twenty years. She is a PhD candidate at CUNY Graduate Center and lives in New York.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 1 comment:

Bruce Hamilton, January 1, 2013 (view all comments by Bruce Hamilton)
I can't deliver a more persuasive argument for favorite book of 2012 than The Nation did in awarding this book its "Most Valuable Book of 2012" award.
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Product Details

ISBN:
9781844678853
Author:
Mcalevey, Jane
Publisher:
Verso
Author:
McAlevey, Jane
Author:
Ostertag, Bob
Subject:
Labor & Industrial Relations
Subject:
Politics-Labor
Publication Date:
20121131
Binding:
HARDCOVER
Language:
English
Pages:
332
Dimensions:
8.25 x 5 in

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Related Subjects

Business » Human Resource Management
Business » Management
Featured Titles » History and Social Science
History and Social Science » Politics » Labor
History and Social Science » Sociology » Social Classes
Science and Mathematics » Biology » Genetics

Raising Expectations (and Raising Hell): My Decade Fighting for the Labor Movement Used Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$17.95 In Stock
Product details 332 pages Verso - English 9781844678853 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "This rousing memoir of McAlevey's decade-long experience as a union organizer spares neither the companies nor the union bosses. After success as a union organizer of home health care workers in Stamford, Connecticut, McAlevey was sent to do the same in Pittsburgh. There she ran up against a union executive vice-president who effectively sabotaged her work. After another successful assignment, McAlevey headed for Las Vegas to organize employees of for-profit 'scumbag' hospitals where the hard work of getting decent contracts for nurses provides a roller coaster experience. She makes certain the reader learns how to organize; the fine points of agreements are dissected thoroughly, including how to keep union members in 'right to work' states. McAlevey is not afraid to name names, offering millionaire CEOs with government contacts their fair dose of scorn. But her strongest fury is with the union leadership who seem to thwart her at every turn. Politics and turf wars are a recurrent theme in this book, which result in the destruction of the health care workers union in Nevada and McAlevey's departure from union work. This is a passionate defense of her efforts and a plea for others to pick up the gauntlet for workers. (Nov.)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
"Synopsis" by , A real-life Norma Rae on the catastrophic state of the American union movement.
"Synopsis" by , How one militant union organizer fought the bosses—and national labor leaders.
"Synopsis" by , Jane McAlevey has been an organizer in the labor and environmental justice movements for the last twenty years. She is a PhD candidate at CUNY Graduate Center and lives in the San Francsico Bay Area.

Bob Ostertag is the co-author of Raising Expectations (and Raising Hell) and author of People’s Movements, People’s Press: The Journalism of Social Justice Movements and Creative Life: Music, Politics, People, and Machines. He has also published two movies and over twenty CDs of music, and covered the Central American civil wars as a journalist. He currently teaches at UC Davis and lives in San Francisco.

"Synopsis" by , Only about 7.5 percent of American private-sector workers belong to a union, the lowest percentage since the beginning of the twentieth century,and public employee collective bargaining is under fire in Wisconsin,Ohio, and elsewhere. What happened to the US labor movement?

Jane McAlevey swept to fame—and notoriety—as the hard-charging “Hurricane Jane” who helped make Las Vegas one of the few labor success stories of recent years. Then she was bounced from the movement, a victim of the high-level internecine warfare that has torn apart organized labor. In an engrossing, suspenseful and funny narrative—that reflects the personality of its charismatic, intense and wise-cracking author—McAlevey tells the story of her amazing organizing victories and lifts the lid on the civil wars inside organized labor. Labor’s Last Stand unearths the reasons for the movement’s downfall and emphatically argues that labor can be revived.

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