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The Wobblies: The Story of the IWW & Syndicalism in the United States
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The Wobblies: The Story of the IWW & Syndicalism in the United States

3.70  ·  Rating Details  ·  69 Ratings  ·  6 Reviews
Does anyone save historians remember the Wobblies? This nickname for the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW), the revolutionary labor union founded in Chicago in 1905, not so long ago was part of the vocabulary of labor and socialist movements everywhere. But few who have heard of the Wobblies know much about their history, aims, or achievements or their impact on Americ ...more
Paperback, 264 pages
Published August 24th 1999 by Ivan R. Dee Publisher (first published 1968)
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Erik Graff
Sep 03, 2010 Erik Graff rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Americans
Recommended to Erik by: no one
Shelves: history
I loved the Wobblies as a kid. Older high school friends had turned me on to them during the sophomore year and had taken me down to their international headquarters in Chicago's Lincoln Park neighborhood before it had gentrified. There, most notably, I met Fred Thompson, author of their official history, a fellow whom I became politically associated with much later, in the eighties, through the Socialist Party.

The first substantial, scholarly book I ever read about the IWW was the collection, R
...more
Rick
May 27, 2014 Rick rated it liked it
Shelves: history
Many people focus on the downside of unions stressing their violent history and strong arm tactics, and miss their accomplishments such as the 8-hour work day and paid vacations, to name only a couple. Perhaps they're thinking about the Industrial Workers of the World, better know as the IWW or the Wobblies. That's fair because the Wobblies were rather extreme and violent, wanting to overturn the capitalist economy. The basic idea of the IWW was to organize unions to challenge the power of the T ...more
P.J. Sullivan
One trouble with unions is disunity, factional infighting, and there is plenty of that in this book. Eventually the syndicalists prevail. What exactly was a syndicalist? It isn't clear from this book, which could benefit from a glossary of terms. What exactly was an anarcho-syndicalist? A Menshevik? The author assumes that you know these terms. And this book could use a roster of the leading players and where they stood on the divisive issues. Maybe even a chart or graph. Because there are lots ...more
David Todd
Nov 11, 2015 David Todd rated it liked it
1967 vintage book about the short history of the International Workers of the World (IWW). Updated in 1999. Reads a little tedious because of all the formed, broken, reformed political and union alliance surrounding this socially liberal attempt at unionizing all workers. Good overview of some of the maim players and their parts in the life of the Wobblies.
Megan
Mar 11, 2008 Megan rated it liked it
Nice, quick, even-handed account of basic IWW history, though possibly a little too focused on the big names (Joe Hill, etc.) rather than the hundreds of thousands of workers that moved in and out of Wobbly membership during the union's main heyday.
Brian
Mar 21, 2010 Brian rated it really liked it
this was a very good book. i wish these people, the anarchist labor class, wouldve won way back when. i was surprised to see so many names i knew in the history of radical labor.

i want to know more.
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