- Series: For Beginners
- Paperback: 176 pages
- Publisher: For Beginners (October 16, 2012)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1934389773
- ISBN-13: 978-1934389775
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.4 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 10.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 7 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,100,892 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Unions For Beginners Paperback – October 16, 2012
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"As David Cogswell reminds us, America’s economy boomed when union membership was at its height and descended into stagnant wages and underemployment as unions eroded. The author doesn’t entirely dismiss the corruption and lack of fair play that characterized some unions. However, he argues that, in balance, those organizations promoted a social ethic as well as prosperity, buoying the wellbeing of members and non-members alike." -- The Milwaukee Express
"Organized labor surged in the twentieth century, but not everyone understands their purpose in the modern day. Unions for Beginners discusses the role of unions in the American workforce as well as its history. David Cogswell provides a comprehensive introduction of what unions do for the modern worker, telling their history, and their place in today's corporate world that may be leading to their decline. Unions for Beginners is an intriguing modern history lesson, well worth considering for history and social issues collections." -- Midwest Book Review
"[Unions for Beginners] is still recommended for everyone. It's recommended for those interested in the less well known parts of American history, it's recommended for union members who are unfamiliar with their history, and it's recommended for part of the explanation as to how America got into its present financial mess."-- Paul Lappen, Midwest Book Review
About the Author
David Cogswell is a writer based in Hoboken, N.J. He has written thousands of articles on business, travel, politics, and the arts for various print and online publications, including Democratic Underground, Bushwatch, Prison Planet, Indymedia.org, Fortune.com, Travel Weekly, the Hudson Current, and the Jersey Journal. He has contributed pieces to a number of political books, including Fortunate Son, The Making of an American President, by J.H. Hatfield; Ambushed: The Hidden History of the Bush Family by Toby Rogers; and America’s Autopsy Report, by John Kaminski. He’s the publisher of the political and media commentary website HeadBlast (www.davidcogswell.com), which was banned in China and named as a notable antiwar website by The Guardian.
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My only request would be to see more appendix on specific union activities and concepts, like organizing, bargaining, seniority, elections, etc. so it could be used as a bit more of a tool for new union members. As it stands I think it would be great for union members new and old though.
Well it is for beginners in one sense, but don't be fooled. This is a very well researched book, and contrary to one reviewer who clearly hasn't read the book, it is a brief history of Unions in the USA, a history illustrated with a large number of stories of strikes, of organizers, and political contexts.
The book is prefaced and postscripted with discussions about the nature of capitalism, the way it has developed, and the place of unions in democratic/capitalist society.
Some will see it as left wing propoganda. Well, there is a lot of stuff about corporations having small private armies and shooting unionists, beating them up, stuff like that. The kind of thing you don't read in newspapers owned by wealthy industrialists.
This is a great little introduction to the history of ordinary people fighting for their rights.