• A Collective Bargain

  • Unions, Organizing, and the Fight for Democracy
  • By: Jane McAlevey
  • Narrated by: Jane McAlevey
  • Length: 9 hrs and 21 mins
  • 4.7 out of 5 stars (80 ratings)

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A Collective Bargain

By: Jane McAlevey
Narrated by: Jane McAlevey
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Publisher's Summary

From longtime labor organizer Jane McAlevey, a vital call-to-arms in favor of unions, a key force capable of defending our democracy.

For decades, racism, corporate greed, and a skewed political system have been eating away at the social and political fabric of the United States. Yet as McAlevey reminds us, there is one weapon whose effectiveness has been proven repeatedly throughout US history: unions.

In A Collective Bargain, longtime labor organizer, environmental activist, and political campaigner Jane McAlevey makes the case that unions are a key institution capable of taking effective action against today’s super-rich corporate class. Since the 1930s, when unions flourished under New Deal protections, corporations have waged a stealthy and ruthless war against the labor movement. And they’ve been winning.

Until today. Because, as McAlevey shows, unions are making a comeback. Want to reverse the nation’s mounting wealth gap? Put an end to sexual harassment in the workplace? End racial disparities on the job? Negotiate climate justice? Bring back unions.

As McAlevey travels from Pennsylvania hospitals, where nurses are building a new kind of patient-centered unionism, to Silicon Valley, where tech workers have turned to old-fashioned collective action, to the battle being waged by America’s teachers, listeners have a ringside seat at the struggles that will shape our country - and our future. 

Supplemental enhancement PDF accompanies the audiobook. 

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying PDF will be available in your Audible Library along with the audio.

©2020 Jane McAlevey (P)2020 HarperCollins Publishers

What listeners say about A Collective Bargain

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Disappointing

I listened because I wanted to better understand the tactics required for getting workers organized, which she covered, but I found the overall presentation to be very politically biased with no insight as to what role unions themselves may have played in their own demise, what role the Fed plays in contributing to wealth inequality, and what was going on for 8 years under Obama that voters took a chance on Trump. There’s always two sides to every story, but she only believes one of them.

7 people found this helpful

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Great book explaining importance of unions

Every minute of this book is packed full of useful and interesting information about the importance of organizing and how to do it. Must read for everyone trying to organize a workplace.

2 people found this helpful

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Absolutely informative

Jane goes far and above with information on becoming unionized, unions and so much more! Her story is intriguing that it made me feel as if I too was evolved.

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Labor Strategy/History

Unfortunately, the author has a bit of a right wing slant when it comes to international politics. For example, if your 'umbrella protests' in China are supported by Western media and the likes of Ted Cruz/Marco Rubio, and you think they're pro-democracy protests, there may be some deeper questions you need to ask. Additionally, there are things off about some of the described mechanics of macroeconomics; 'taxpayer dollars' are not a concern on the federal level, as the federal government is the currency issuer, and reinforcing this concern is the logical premise used by Democrat and Republican politicians to push austerity from both ends of the fictional balance sheet (Democrats: Revenue i.e. taxes, Republicans: Costs i.e. spending). This mistake is what contributes to the author concluding with a promotion of the tactic of applying union/workplace organizing toward getting Democrats elected.

Fortunately, there is value in the book's descriptions of union/workplace organizing as well as the history of such organizing portrayed in the text. The actual way forward will be an application of those tactics not toward reinforcing neoliberal political monopoly but by building alternatives.

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Thank you

This is extraordinarily informative about unions and are present state of democracy. This is the number one book I would recommend to anybody who asks me what they should read next.

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Clear-eyed, inspirational, essential

Well-argued, part myth-busting, part history lesson, and part strategy for getting out of our neoliberal hell.

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very interesting

I learned a lot from this book. introduced me to some new insights about big political moves, and also union busting techniques and how they are applied to national politics as well