|Quatrième de couverture
Based upon an abundance of first-hand material gathered by the author in the course of more than a decade of research and labour education in the region, Labour After Communism examines the complex interplay of history, ideology, leadership, state policy, and economic conditions to explain the difficulties workers have encountered in defending their interests against a methodical, state-led attack on living standards and work conditions, and against the arbitrary power of predatory managers and owners. It combines a comparative analysis of the union movements of the three countries with detailed case studies of local unions.
On a more general level, the book is an inquiry into the condition of civil society after the fall of Soviet totalitarianism. Unions being by far the largest and most influential popular organizations, their fate is central to the prospects for democracy in these countries.
"Based on his remarkable personal contacts with trade union activists as well as his deep understanding of the labour movement both in the old USSR and its successor states, David Mandel has written a gripping account of the situation of workers since the early 1990s. An important book and a great read." Leo Panitch, Canada Research Chair in Comparative Political Economy, York University, co-editor of the Socialist Register, and co-author of The Assault on Trade Union Freedoms
"This book is a major achievement. There is no doubt that Mandel is one of the few Western scholars with a detailed expert knowledge of post-Soviet labour. What is more, it is the only study of post-Soviet industry I know of which examines all three Slavic republics." Donald Filtzer, Professor of Russian History, University of East London and author of Soviet Workers and Late Stalinism
"David Mandel's book combines an intimate familiarity with Russian, Ukrainian and Byelorussian working class struggles, the real social contradictions and power relations underlying shock therapy and capitalist restoration and the requirements for genuine trade unions in what was once the Soviet Union." Herman Rosenfeld, Canadian Autoworkers Union
DAVID MANDEL, labour and 'post-Soviet' scholar, union and political activist, teaches political science at the University of Quebec, Montreal. He is co-founder of the School for Worker Democracy, which conducts rank-and-file labour education in Russia, Ukraine and Belarus. He has written extensively on labour, society, and politics, past and present, in the region, and is the author of Perestroika and the Soviet People, Former "State Socialist" World, and Looking East Leftwards (Black Rose Books).