Archives for category: workplace organising
The problem with work: feminism, marxism, antiwork politics and postwork imaginaries - Kathi Weeks

From libcom.org: In The Problem with Work, Kathi Weeks boldly challenges the presupposition that work, or waged labor, is inherently a social and political good. While progressive political movements, including the Marxist and feminist movements, have fought for equal pay, better work conditions, and the recognition of unpaid work as a valued form of labor, even they have tended to accept work as a naturalized or inevitable activity. Weeks argues that in taking work as a given, we have “depoliticized” it, or removed it from the realm of political critique.

Employment is now largely privatized, and work-based activism in the United States has atrophied. We have accepted waged work as the primary mechanism for income distribution, as an ethical obligation, and as a means of defining ourselves and others as social and political subjects. Taking up Marxist and feminist critiques, Weeks proposes a postwork society that would allow people to be productive and creative rather than relentlessly bound to the employment relation. Work, she contends, is a legitimate, even crucial, subject for political theory.

An HTML version of the Introduction is available here.

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The problem with work – Kathi Weeks 2.48 MB
Fighting for ourselves: Anarcho-syndicalism and the class struggle - Solidarity

This excellent book by Solfed aims to recover some of the lost history of the workers’ movement, in order to set out a revolutionary strategy for the present conditions. In clear and accessible prose, the book sets out the anarcho-syndicalist criticisms of political parties and trade unions, engages with other radical traditions such as anarchism, syndicalism and dissident Marxisms, explains what anarcho-syndicalism was in the twentieth century, and how it’s relevant – indeed, vital – for workers today.

You can buy hard copies of Fighting for ourselves for £6 (including p&p) from Freedom Press (UK – £5 in the shop), and for $10+p&p from Thoughtcrime Ink Books (North America). For other countries please contact Solidarity Federation.

Book information
Publisher: Solidarity Federation and Freedom Press (London, UK)
Publication date: Oct 27, 2012
ISBN: 978-1904491200
Paperback: 124 pages.
Dimensions: 210 x 148 x 8mm

Taken from http://www.selfed.org.uk/read/ffo

Creative Commons Licence
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.

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Fighting for ourselves – mobi (Kindle) version 243.57 KB
Fighting for ourselves – ePub version 161.62 KB
Fighting for ourselves – pdf version 802.16 KB
AAUD/AAUD-E reader

A reader compiled from various texts online of the AAUD/AAUD-E, a radical union/movement that emerged in Germany whose ideas and practice has influenced strands of anarcho-syndicalism and council communism.

 

CONTENTS

The Communist Left in Germany1918-1921 by Gilles Dauvé and Denis Authier

Paul Mattick and Council Communism by Claudio Pozzoli

Council Communism by Mark Shipway

The Councilist Movement in Germany (1914-1935): A History of the AAUD-E Tendency by CICA

Preliminaries on Councils and Councilist Organization by René Riesel

The Origins of the Movement for Workers’ Councils in Germany by GIC

Program of the AAUD

Extracts from the Guidelines of the AAUD

Guidelines of the AAUD-E

Attachment Size
aaudreaderfinal.pdf 1.17 MB
Eclipse and Re-Emergence of the Communist Movement

A book by Francois Martin and Jean Barrot (AKA Giles Dauve), quite influential since the 1970s in the English-speaking world of radical theory. A restatement of communist revolution as self-organised class struggle – that abolishes markets, states and classes.

Original edition published by Black and Red, Detroit 1974.
Revised edition published by Antagonism Press, London 1997, containing a new foreword and lacking the ‘Open Letter to the Conference of Revolutionary Groups’ and the ‘Letter on the Use of Violence’. The appendix below, ‘Note on Pannekoek and Bordiga’, is a re-working of the original appendix, ‘Notes on Trotsky, Pannekoek and Bordiga‘.

Contents

From Libcom.org

About a month back, just after the proposed changes to the ERA were announced, an emergency rally was held at Cathedral Square. This was called by a local Unite organiser and was reasonably well attended despite the short notice. Approximately 50 people were present ranging from union officials, delegates, rank and file, community activists and other concerned members of the public.

An organising meeting was called for the Monday after, which was again, well attended with about 40-50 people present. This meeting was well facilitated by the Unite organiser and everyone present were involved in discussions and decision making. The layout of the room was a large circle which enabled everyone to face each other and participate. The only negatives were a rant by an EPMU official, who went on about how much work he’d done to get the first rally organised and how if it wasn’t for him it would have been a complete failure. There was also murmurings by an official of the SFWU about support for Labour.

Another organising meeting was called for the following Monday and a decision was made to hold a protest rally on Sunday 8th on the corner of High St and Hereford, outside KFC. After this meeting members of Beyond Resistance and the Workers Party had some conversations about concerns that the union officials and the CTU would use this fight back as an opportunity to campaign for Labour. Also that the CTU would want to control any fight back. It was decided that members of Beyond Resistance would attend the next Workers Party meeting to organise as an anti-capitalist presence within the fight back.

So the next Monday two members of Beyond Resistance attended a Workers Party meeting, which was before the fight back organising meeting. It was decided to use the ‘Workers rights campaign’ [loose coalition of anti-capitalist groups formed after the 90 day bill was first announced by Wayne Mapp (ya bill is crap)] as a vehicle to organise from an anti-capitalist perspective. It was also decided that Beyond Resistance and Workers Party would organise a public meeting with four speakers, to present an anti-capitalist analyisis and discussion.

Then the organising meeting. It had been pre planned by union officials. The layout of the room was different, a panel of union officials facing everyone else as an audience. Everyone was told of the plan for the protest rally by the EPMU official and then a guest Australian union official/labour party candidate spoke about a campaign waged in Australia by unions and sections of the wider society against industrial law changes, that in his words, helped bring down the Howard Government. He also talked about the need for the ‘bottom up'(grassroots) to work with the ‘top down'(union bureaucracy, Labour Party). The bottom up for donkey work and the top down for finances and direction/decisions. There was no real opportunity for input by those present and it appeared as though the decisions about the protest had already been made. The next meeting was called  a ‘more dui less Hui’ working bee to make banners and placards.

The protest rally on Sunday 8th was reasonably well attended with about 100 people present. There was about 10 minutes of speakers, then union officials attempted to rap it all up and go home. At this point members of Beyond Resistance put the question to the assembly of 100 or so. Do people want to march? There was an overwelming ‘yes’ and so a march through parts of town proceeded. People joined the march on route and militant chants were hollered by the marching mass, ‘This is Class War — Smash the Anti-Worker Laws’ being a favourite. Flyers were handed out about the Public meeting organised for the following week.

The public meeting was well attended with speakers from Unite, Workers Party, Beyond Resistance and an advocate who dealt with workplace greviences. There was about 50 present and after informative talks by the four speakers some great discussions followed. Plans have been made for the CTU 21st rally where an anti-capitalist bloc will lead a march after the rally, taking people on a tour of organisations offices who support of the Governments proposed changes to the ERA i.e. business community and politians. Information flyers will also be handed out as will flyers advertising a film for the following Saturday, where the Workers Party and Beyond Resistance will be screening the Australian film ‘Rocking the Foundations’ (about the BLF in Sydney in the 70’s). Another thing that came out of this meeting was a need for on-going activities, from educational events to protests and industrial action. Regular meetings are planned for the future.

What has also occured is that the organising by the CTU/union officials has divided itself from all others interested in organising around a fight back against the ERA changes. The CTU has shut out any others from participating in their organising in Christchurch and it is rumoured that meetings have been taking place between union officials and the Labour Party. It is possible that the Unite organisers have also not been privy to the CTU’s formal meetings here, however this has not been confirmed.

What is clear is that from the first emergency rally and meeting until now a split has occurred between the local CTU affiliated union officials, and everyone else who have wished to attend meetingsand be involved in organising a fight back against the Governments proposed changes to the ERA.

The battle continues…

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