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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

4.15 of 5 stars 4.15  ·  rating details  ·  54 ratings  ·  9 reviews
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
ebook, 312 pages
Published November 20th 2012 by Verso (first published January 1st 2012)
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Jamie VW
It's hard to feel completely comfortable with a tell-all. It is hard to distinguish the pursuit of score-settling from honest critiques and assessments and since a large portion of this book is designed to illuminate worker successes in the labor movement - and how they are still possible in this day and age, the negativity about many well-known union players makes it feel all that more futile.

That being said, as a former SEIU organizer myself, I agree with many of her points and her arguments a
After Michigan went “Right to Work” I realized I knew precious little about labor unions. All I’ve had to go on was my parents, grandparents and now in laws telling me that unions are absolutely essential while countless others told me about their waste and irrelevance. This well written account of a former SEIU organizer, predominately about her support of nurses in right to work Nevada, opened my eyes about why unions are still needed (on the shop floor and in the community) and where they can ...more
Jane McAlevey is my hero. She writes a fascinating account of how she kicked ass in organizing workers across the country, and at no point does she sound egotistical about it. And although her story involves politics, power, money, and backstabbing, her story ultimately is about the power America's workers have when they unite.
It is also a lesson in the inner workings of today's labor unions (or at least one union--the SEIU). You will be blown away by what was won and lost during McAlevey's tim
Fantastic account of union organising in the USA. McAlevey writes in a lively and engaging manner, and details the important organising campaigns she led throughout the decade. We can learn a lot of lessons from her style of 'whole of worker organising', as she calls it. Unfortunately, most of her hardwork - and the hardwork of the members - was undone by labour bureaucracy and political infighting. This was an extremely engaging book that contains many important lessons for union movements in d ...more
I can't think of another book I would consider more essential reading on the American labor movement that has been written in the past decade. If you've got one, direct me to it. (Kim Moody's book U.S. Labor in Trouble and Transition might be close.) But seriously. This is a fantastic, highly-readable book that you should read.
Caeser Pink
A great book for anyone interested in labor relations. Jane has great insights from the trenches. For those who side with the working class, the stories are inspirational. She also has insights into problems within labor unions that holds back their success.
As a social worker who organizes, I found myself very drawn in by the description of whole worker organizing. We need a movement more than ever, and empowering workers (and keeping them empowered) is where we must begin!
Marylee Raymond
This woman is what Saul Alinsky was to the 60's. SHE IS THE BEST. This is an amazing journey -- 10 years organizing. Labor Unions take note -- labor needs a new attitude!!
Nicolas Brannon
A gripping narrative; informative and inspiring.
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