Short text: Encouraging insights in the face of global turmoil: case studies from five continents illustrate the central role of organized workers in struggles against authoritarianism, fascism, and dictatorships.
Across the world, authoritarianism is on the rise, as a look at Donald Trump, Recep Erdoğan, Jair Bolsonaro, Viktor Orbán, and a host of other heads of government makes clear. In Latin America, coups are becoming commonplace again and finding international acceptance, just like in Egypt too. In multiple countries throughout the Arab world, protest movements in response to the post-2008 crisis have been suppressed with brutal violence. However, heavy-handed state violence is also being used against protestors in countries such as France and the USA. The effects of the crisis trickle down repressively to the most vulnerable, while the redistribution of wealth flows increasingly towards those at the top.
In struggles for democratization, workers continue to play a central role: from the new, class-conscious feminism to the mass protests that have erupted in countries such as Chile, Lebanon, and France. How have workers historically fought against fascism, dictatorships, authoritarian regimes, and repressive tendencies in society, and how are they doing so today? And how do they organize themselves within and outside of trade unions?
Featuring contributions from some 30 authors on the new class-conscious feminism and labour struggles during the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as stories from France, the USA, Germany, Japan, Chile, Brazil, Colombia, Israel, Lebanon, Iraq, Iran, the Philippines, Russia, Argentina, Spain, Indonesia, South Korea, the former East Germany, Tunisia, Egypt, and Bosnia-Herzegovina.
Dario Azzellini is a professor in the development studies doctoral programme at the Autonomous University of Zacatecas, Mexico, and a visiting scholar at the Latin American Studies Program at Cornell, USA. For over 25 years he has been researching processes of social transformation. In 2018, VSA published his book Vom Protest zum sozialen Prozess: Betriebsbesetzungen und Arbeiten in Selbstverwaltung.