Immanuel Ness

Immanuel Ness

Immanuel Ness is professor of political science at Brooklyn College of the City University of New York. His research focuses on labor organization and mobilization, migration, resistance and social movements against oppression from a historical and comparative perspective. Ness is the author of Guest Workers and Resistance to U.S. Corporate Despotism (University of Illinois, 2011) and  Immigrants, Unions, and the U.S. Labor Market (Temple University Press, 2005). He is general editor with Peter Bellwood of Encyclopedia of Global Human Migration, 5 volumes (2013). He is finishing a book on imperialism, foreign direct investment and class struggles in the global South (Monthly Review, 2014). Ness is coeditor of Ours to Master and to Own: Worker Control from the Commune to the Present (Haymarket, 2011) and a forthcoming second volume of the work (Haymarket, 2013). He has written or edited many other books on labor, workers organization, migration, and urban politics with leading publishers. He is editor of the peer-reviewed quarterly journal Working USA: The Journal of Labor and Society

In 2005, his four-volume work Encyclopedia of American Social Movements received Outstanding Reference Source, Reference and User Services Association, American Library Association. The work was selected as best reference for 2005 from Library Journal. He received awards and acclaim for his other reference works, including Encyclopedia of Third Parties in America. In 2009, he edited International Encyclopedia of Protest and Revolution: 1500 to the Present, a 4,000-page, eight-volume collection, which was critically acclaimed in reviews and received Booklist, Editor’ Choice Best Reference, 2009AAP PROSE, Award, Honorable Mention for Multivolume Reference, and a finalist for the 2009 Dartmouth Medal. In addition, he has authored numerous peer-reviewed chapters, book chapters, and essays.  Email: [email protected] or [email protected]

Books by Immanuel

New Forms of Worker Organization: The Syndicalist and Autonomist Restoration of Class Struggle Unionism

New Forms of Worker Organization: The Syndicalist and Autonomist Restoration of Class Struggle Unionism

SKU: 9781604869569
Editor: Immanuel Ness • Foreword by Staughton Lynd
Publisher: PM Press
ISBN: 9781604869569
Published: 7/2014
Format: Paperback, ePub, PDF, mobi
Size: 6 x 9
Page count: 336
Subjects: Labor Studies/Politics-Activism/ Economics-Global


“As the U.S. labor movement conducts its latest, frantic search for ’new ideas,’ there is no better source of radical thinking on improved modes of union functioning than the diverse contributors to this timely collection. New Forms of Worker Organization vividly describes what workers in Africa, Asia, South America, and Europe have done to make their unions more effective. Let’s hope that these compelling case studies of rank-and-file struggle and bottom up change lead to more of the same where it’s needed the most, among those of us ’born in the USA!’“
—Steve Early, former organizer for the Communications Workers of America and author of Save Our Unions: Dispatches from a Movement in Distress

This book is a crucial analytical and tactical handbook for workers protesting against management. In most cases, protests, strikes, and insurgencies are only measured through government data. New Forms of Worker Organization provides independent information on workers’ protest, their reasons, and the nature in which they are realized—essential for understanding the true shape of the workers movements in countries throughout the world. This research should be used by workers and labor unions as a tool to reach their objectives and to protect and advance workers’ rights.“
—Vadim Borisov, representative IndustriALL Global Union, CIS Region, sociologist, and author of over 100 publications on workers’ movements in Russia, including Workers and the Transition to Capitalism in Russia (Verso)

“Working people everywhere are feeling the pressure in a world where corporations increasingly dominate our economic, political, and social lives. In country after country, traditional unionism, advocacy, and policy reform have been proven unfit for the task of restoring the dignity and financial security of working families. The critical stories of cutting-edge organizing found in New Forms of Worker Organization demonstrate that workers themselves hold the key to creating a world where work is honored and freedom of association is absolute.“
—Daniel Gross, executive director, Brandworkers, and cofounder, IWW Starbucks Workers Union

“This exciting collection provides substantial evidence that collective action by workers themselves is indispensable to advancing a strong labor movement. The book’s global scope demonstrates that workers in the U.S. and beyond can learn much from the tactics, strategies, and historical struggles in other countries.“
—Kim Scipes, author of AFL-CIO’s Secret War against Developing Country Workers: Solidarity or Sabotage?

“Conventional unionism’s decline over recent decades and now capitalism’s worst global crisis since the 1930s are enabling and provoking unconventional forms of workers’ struggles. Some are new and others are new versions of old forms with urgently renewed relevance today. Received concepts and theories of class, class struggle, economic democracy, workers’ power, socialism and communism are being reexamined and changed to meet the practical needs and conditions of anticapitalist struggle now. Immanuel Ness’s new volume documents some dramatic new projects of self-conscious class struggle around the world.“
—Richard D. Wolff, and the New School University, New York

Introductions by Immanuel

Solidarity Unionism: Rebuilding the Labor Movement from Below, Second Edition

Solidarity Unionism: Rebuilding the Labor Movement from Below, Second Edition

SKU: 9781629630960
Author: Staughton Lynd • Introduction by Immanuel Ness • Illustrated by Mike Konopacki
Publisher: PM Press
ISBN: 9781629630960
Published: 4/2015
Format: Paperback, ePub, PDF, mobi
Size: 5 x 8
Page count: 128
Subjects: Labor Studies / Politics


Solidarity Unionism is an essential text for all rank-and-file workers as well as labor activists. Beautifully succinct, it outlines how CIO unions grew into an ineffectual model for rank-and-file empowerment, and provides examples of how alternative labor organizations have flourished in the wake of this. Lynd illustrates to a new generation of workers that we do have alternatives, and his call for a qualitatively different kind of labor organization gives us an ideological and strategic framework that we can apply in our day-to-day struggles on the shop floor.”
—Diane Krauthamer, Industrial Worker

Solidarity Unionism is based in a vision of genuine democracy. It’s accessibly written and rich in practical examples. I’ve used it successfully in study groups and labor education courses both to draw out and learn from participants’ own experiences and to plan our next steps in struggles. Challenging some of what are conventionally thought of as “wins” (e.g., dues checkoff or signed contracts), the book impels the kind of strategic thinking otherwise lacking in most of labor and the Left.”
—Norm Diamond, former president, Pacific Northwest Labor College and coauthor of The Power in Our Hands

“Brother Staughton Lynd continues to offer an informed, critical voice and many important ideas for today’s labor movement. Anyone fighting for a better world for working people will be glad to read this revised edition of Solidarity Unionism, and to pass it on to students, friends, and fellow workers.”
—Michael Honey, Haley Professor of Humanities, University of Washington–Tacoma and author of Going Down Jericho Road

“Staughton Lynd’s Solidarity Unionism mines his decades of labor activism and a century of American workers’ struggles to shine a beacon on an alternative path that replaces top-down labor organization with local autonomy and community-level networking. Before you despair of reasserting workers’ rights and power, read Solidarity Unionism!”
—Jeremy Brecher, Labor Network for Sustainability, author of Strike!

“In Solidarity Unionism, workers are protagonists, not spectators, and that makes all the difference in the world. Staughton Lynd’s ideas will be at the heart of the next mass worker rising.”
—Daniel Gross, executive director of Brandworkers and cofounder of IWW Starbucks Workers Union

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