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No ShortcutsOrganizing for Power in the New Gilded Age$
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Jane F. McAlevey

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780190624712

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190624712.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 24 October 2021

The Power to Win is in the Community, Not the Boardroom

The Power to Win is in the Community, Not the Boardroom

(p.27) 2 The Power to Win is in the Community, Not the Boardroom
No Shortcuts

Jane F. McAlevey

Oxford University Press

This chapter dissects the relationship between power and strategy, and compares two distinct approaches to social change—the dominating mobilizing approach and the underused organizing approach. It proposes a blended approach called whole-worker organizing that tightly integrates workplace and nonworkplace issues, action, and learning into a holistic strategy. The successes of whole-worker organizing show that where unions understand all workers—union members and unorganized—to be class actors in their communities, and when the workers systematically bring their own pre-existing community networks into their workplace fights, workers can still win, and their wins produce a transformational change in consciousness. Sandwiched between the why and how of deep community engagement is a focused discussion about the difference between organizing and mobilizing, the evolution of the mobilizing model, and why each approach produces different levels of power.

Keywords:   mobilizing approach, organizing approach, whole worker organizing, community networks, community engagement

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