Cultures of Solidarity: Consciousness, Action, and Contemporary American Workers
A commonplace assumption about American workers is that they lack class consciousness. This perception has baffled social scientists, demoralized activists, and generated a significant literature on American exceptionalism. In this provocative book, a young sociologist takes the prevailing assumptions to task and sheds new light upon this very important issue. In three vivid case studies Fantasia explores the complicated, multi-faceted dynamics of American working-class consciousness and collective action.
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activity administration AFL-CIO American workers Angela Davis anti-union break room bureaucratic campaign Charles Tilly church class consciousness Clinton Corn Clinton Herald collective action collective bargaining company unions Concerned Citizens conflict context corporate created cultures of solidarity develop discussion dynamics E. P. Thompson election emergent employers expressed factory families felt finishing department forced foreman Frank Parkin Gordon Marshall grievance important industrial relations institutions issue labor relations meetings membership ment militant mobilization national union NLRB nurses opposition organizing committee participants percent period picket line plant police political postwar potential radical represented response role seemed shift social contract Springfield Hospital strategy strike community strikebreakers structures struggle supervisors tactics Taft-Hartley Act Taylor Casting Company threat throughout tion tive trade union traditional union drive union leaders union leadership union officials union organizer union supporters United viewed vote wildcat strikes women worker solidarity workforce workplace
Page 19 - To an ethnographer, sorting through the machinery of distant ideas, the shapes of knowledge are always ineluctably local, indivisible from their instruments and their encasements.
Page 15 - culture' of a group or class is the peculiar and distinctive 'way of life' of the group or class. the meanings. values and ideas embodied in institutions. in social relations. in systems of beliefs. in mores and customs. in the uses of objects and material life. Culture is the distinctive shapes in which this material and social organisation of life expresses itself. A culture includes the 'maps of meaning' which make things intelligible to its members.
Page 10 - In direct contrast to German philosophy which descends from heaven to earth, here we ascend from earth to heaven. That is to say, we do not set out from what men say, imagine, conceive, nor from men as narrated, thought of, imagined, conceived, in order to arrive at men in the flesh. We set out from real, active men, and on the basis of their real lifeprocess...
Page 9 - The combination of capital has created for this mass a common situation, common interests. This mass is thus already a class as against capital, but not yet for itself. In the struggle, of which we have noted only a few phases, this mass becomes united, and constitutes itself as a class for itself.
Page 15 - Consciousness of class arises in the same way in different times and places, but never in just the same way.