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Workers Across the AmericasThe Transnational Turn in Labor History$
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Leon Fink

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780199731633

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199731633.001.0001

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Workers Across the Americas

Nelson Lichtenstein

Oxford University Press

As a locus for working-class demands, protections, and civic participation, the modern state may be undergoing a dramatic thinning process as transnational corporations become increasingly detached from and subversive of the traditional exercise of state regulatory power. Indeed, the rise of a system of global supply chains, with their multilayered sets of factories, vendors, and transport links, has created a world system in which legal ownership of the forces of production has been divorced from operational control. This thinning of state capacity in the twenty-first century returns us to a world that nineteenth-century observers would find quite familiar, when political boundaries and economic regimes did not necessarily coincide, and the labor movement searched for a mechanism by which standards, rights, and political voice might be exercised in a world economy that was both highly integrated and poorly regulated.

Keywords:   regulation, states, labor, transnational

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