Russian Workers: The Anatomy of Patience

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Manchester University Press, 1999 - Business & Economics - 202 pages
Following the strike waves of 1989 and 1991, many commentators expected Russian workers to play a decisive role in determining the course of transition. Workers have stoically endured a catastrophic decline in living standards, a loss of security and wage delays of six months or more. Sarah Ashwin’s book directly confronts this paradox, dissecting the apparent "patience" of Russian workers through an original analysis of the forms of social integration fostered within the Soviet and post-Soviet enterprise, and an examination of the barriers that have prevented trade unions from effectively representing workers’ interests during the transition. Ashwin's analysis is based on an ethnographic case study of a South Kuzbass coal mine. Starting from interviews with workers and trade union activists, Ashwin relates large-scale political, social and economic changes to the dilemmas of everyday life, showing how workers’ responses to reform are influencing the post-communist recomposition of the Russian state and economy.
 

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Contents

Russian workers in transition from
1
portrait of a mining settlement in transition 3 7
37
privatisation and its discontents
65
the Taldym trade union committee
84
the prospects of reform from below
111
workers and the labour collective
120
the stunted collectivism of the immediate work
146
individual and collective strategies
168
Conclusion
180
References
190
Index
197
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Page 193 - ED. Management and industry in Russia: Formal and informal relations in the period of transition.

About the author (1999)

Sarah Ashwin is Lecturer in Industrial Relations at the London School of Economics.

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