Edited By Heather Connolly, Lefteris Kretsos and Craig Phelan
Radical Trade Unionism in Spain: The Re-Invention and Re-Imagination of Autonomy and Democracy Within and Around the Union Movement During the Past Century
Spain is a country that has a rich and diverse tradition of radical trade unionism and a variety of labour movement discourses of self-management. These have developed in a variety of ways and have reflected the uneven post-imperial economic development of the country during the 19th and 20th centuries. Linked to newly industrial regions as well as agriculturally backward regions, the character of the more radical and revolutionary elements of the labour movement consisted of both utopian beliefs and agitation. The influence of French anarchism was one factor that generated an important commitment to a politically oriented trade union movement (Woodcock, 2004). However, much of this radical tradition – along with those from a social democratic heritage – has had a chequered history due to the repressive features of the Spanish state in relation to liberal and radical ideas and movements at various points in the past two centuries. Hence, the history of these features of the labour movement consists of serious ruptures and inconsistencies. However, these traditions of struggle emerge and re-emerge at different points, reinventing themselves around different collectives and constituencies within the working classes. ← 111 | 112 →
To this extent, any discussion of the nature and character of radical unionism needs to have a broad and sensitive approach in historical terms and in organisational ones. Radical unionism in the context of Spain is not just an ‘informal’ or unofficial tier of the ‘official’ or ‘labour’ movement – it is in part that – but is...
You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.
This site requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books or journals.
Do you have any questions? Contact us.Or login to access all content.