The Myth of Mondragon: Cooperatives, Politics, and Working Class Life in a Basque Town
This is the first critical account of the internationally renowned Mondragon cooperatives of the Basque region of Spain. The Mondragon cooperatives are seen as the leading alternative model to standard industrial organization; they are considered to be the most successful example of democratic decision making and worker ownership. However, the author argues that the vast scholarly and popular literature on Mondragon idealizes the cooperatives by falsely portraying them as apolitical institutions and by ignoring the experiences of shop floor workers. She shows how this creation of an idealized image of the cooperatives is part of a new global ideology that promotes cooperative labor-management relations in order to discredit labor unions and working-class organizations; this constitutes what she calls the "myth" of Mondragon.
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action activism affiliates argued Arizmendiarrieta Arrasate assembly line bars Basque Country Basque egalitarianism Basque identity Basque nationalism Basque nationalist Basque towns Bergara Caja Laboral capital Carlist CCOO chapter co-op workers conflict contract cooperative system cooperative workers cooperativism cultural democracy democratic dragon economic egalitarianism ELA-STV employees Eroski ETA-V ETA's Euskadi Euskera factions of ETA factory Fagor Fagor Clima fascist Fordist Garagartza Gipuzkoa Governing Council Greenwood and Gonzalez Heiberg Herri Batasuna ideology ikastolas industrial interviews Jose Kasmir labor labor-management managerial managers Mayc Mondragon cooperatives myth Oktubre Taldea organization participation party percent plans plant political popular private firms production PSOE radical nationalist represented Sabino Arana sector shift Social Council socialist solidarity Spain Spanish immigrants structure syndicates temporary workers tion tive told townspeople transformed Ulgor strike Union Cerrajera vote Whyte and Whyte women worker ownership working-class workplace workplace democracy Zutik