Revolutionary Industrial Unionism: The Industrial Workers of the World in Australia

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Cambridge University Press, 1995 - Biography & Autobiography - 346 pages
The Industrial Workers of the World (IWW) in Australia are better known for the stories told about them than for any document historical significance. Renowned for their audacity and hooliganism the 'Wobblies' were particularly notorious for their active opposition to World War I. This landmark book conveys the vitality and drama of Wobbly activity, and also assesses the impact of the IWW on Australian political and labour history. Drawing from an impressive range of sources, Verity Burgmann writes with vigour and passion about Wobbly culture, and describes their doctrines, methods and organisation. The book highlights the unique nature of the IWW in Australia, and traces Wobbly influence in much post-war activity. Now, with the widespread collapse of communism and the inadequacies of labour parties, the IWW, as an alternative form of revolutionary working-class politics, merits renewed investigation.
 

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Contents

Flowers to the rebels failed
1
the arrival of the
27
who were the Wobblies?
61
the challenge to workingclass racism
79
organisation and practice
111
ethics and economics
130
the critique of Laborism
143
direct industrial action
159
the state responds
203
the release campaign
229
What happened to the Wobblies?
246
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