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New York LongshoremenClass and Power on the Docks$
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William J. Mello

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780813034898

Published to Florida Scholarship Online: September 2011

DOI: 10.5744/florida/9780813034898.001.0001

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History as Class Politics on the Docks

History as Class Politics on the Docks

Chapter:
(p.6) 1 History as Class Politics on the Docks
Source:
New York Longshoremen
Author(s):

William J. Mello

Publisher:
University Press of Florida
DOI:10.5744/florida/9780813034898.003.0002

This chapter examines the role of class in the process of political change and the limits to working-class action. Neither the pluralist nor the elite domination models of power entirely explain political change; they are partial accounts at best. In a historical perspective, the distinct ways in which power and politics shaped each other in the East Coast unions illustrates the deeper conflict of how power relations reshaped working-class political participation, introducing historical evidence and the debate of class and power in American political development. The struggles of New York's dockworkers appear as the harbinger for a process whereby labor's political power in the United States became radically limited.

Keywords:   class politics, dockworkers, working class, political change, labor union, political participation

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