News

Telling Labor's Story

June 14, 2012

by Lowell Peterson


Chicago Daily News negatives collection, Chicago History Museum.

Like so many things in life, politics is about narrative. About which organization, or candidate, or policy offers the most compelling story. As I see it, the labor movement is trapped inside three tiresome story lines.

There's the sentimental favorite, which many activists (including me) like to tell ourselves: Unions are the folks who brought you the weekend. Organized labor enabled working people to rise from the exploitive depths of the Depression, to beat back the worst ravages of unbridled corporate greed.
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