Reading List

Strike Wave Reading List


After a long period of dormancy, the labor movement has seen a wave of dynamism in recent years. More than 100,000 union workers, from nurses to Hollywood crew members to John Deere factory workers, have voted for strike authorizations in the last month. These efforts have followed a much higher labor militancy in recent years in sectors such as teaching, healthcare and logistics. Below are readings on the labor movement’s past, and where it might go from here.  

The brutal truth behind our automated futures and the new world of work.

An exhilarating challenge to the way we think about work, technology, progress, and what we want from the future.

As precarity and low pay become further embedded in the job market, at a time when work-related stress and exhaustion are endemic, it is clear that a new, radical approach to employment is required.

A brilliant and comprehensive study of class struggle in the United States.

A bracing riposte to the conventional wisdom concerning the irresistible power of globalization, Workers in a Lean World is a definitive account of contemporary labor relations on a global scale.

Looking to the future, Moody shows how the rise of immigrant labor and its efforts at self-organization can re-energize the unions from below. US Labor in Trouble and Transition is a major intervention in the ongoing debate within the US labor movement. 

Raising Expectations (and Raising Hell) argues that labor can be revived, but only if the movement acknowledges its mistakes and fully commits to deep organizing, participatory education, militancy, and an approach to workers and their communities that more resembles the campaigns of the 1930s—in short, social movement unionism that involves raising workers’ expectations (while raising hell).

The decline of the American union movement—and how it can revive, by a leading analyst of labor.

A leading activist museum director explains why museums are at the center of a political storm and how they can be reimagined.

An indispensable window into the changing shape of the American working class and American politics.

A classic book on the legacy of Rosa Luxemburg’s work with essays of political analysis by leading scholars.

An important contribution to our understanding of twentieth-century Marxism.

In a major new analysis of our global situation, Žižek argues for the need of a renewed movement against global capitalism.

The classic text of Italian workerism finally available in English.

Why every worker should join a trade union.

When cowboys were workers and battled their bosses.

What America has at stake when some children go to school hungry and others ride in $1,000 strollers.

Strike for America is the story of the Chicago Teacher's strike movement and how it triumphed in the defining struggle for workers today.

The hidden story of the 1970s insurgency from below, against employers and bureaucrats.