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When unions undertake labor organizing campaigns, they often do so from strong moral positions, contrasting workers’ rights to decent pay or better working conditions with the more venal financial motives of management. But how does labor confront management when management itself has moral legitimacy? In With God on Our Side, Adam D. Reich tells the story of a five-year campaign to unionize Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital, a Catholic hospital in California. Based on his own work as a volunteer organizer with the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), Reich explores how both union leaders and hospital leaders sought to show they were upholding the Catholic "mission" of the hospital against a market represented by the other. Ultimately, workers and union leaders were able to reinterpret Catholic values in ways that supported their efforts to organize.

More generally, Reich argues that unions must weave together economic and cultural power in order to ensure their continued relevancy in the postindustrial world. In addition to advocating for workers’ economic interests, unions must engage with workers’ emotional investments in their work, must contend with the kind of moral authority that Santa Rosa Hospital leaders exerted to dissuade workers from organizing, and must connect labor’s project to broader conceptions of the public good.

When unions undertake labor organizing campaigns, they often do so from strong moral positions, contrasting workers' rights to decent pay or better working conditions with the more venal financial motives of management. But how does labor confront management when management itself has moral legitimacy? In With God on Our Side, Adam D. Reich tells the story of a five-year campaign to unionize Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital, a Catholic hospital in California. Based on his own work as a volunteer organizer with the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), Reich explores how both union leaders and hospital leaders sought to show they were upholding the Catholic "mission" of the hospital against a market represented by the other. Ultimately, workers and union leaders were able to reinterpret Catholic values in ways that supported their efforts to organize.More generally, Reich argues that unions must weave together economic and cultural power in order to ensure their continued relevancy in the postindustrial world. In addition to advocating for workers' economic interests, unions must engage with workers' emotional investments in their work, must contend with the kind of moral authority that Santa Rosa Hospital leaders exerted to dissuade workers from organizing, and must connect labor's project to broader conceptions of the public good.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
  2. p. 1
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  1. Title Page, Copyright Page
  2. pp. 2-7
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  1. Contents
  2. pp. 8-9
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  1. Preface
  2. pp. ix-xii
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  1. Acknowledgments
  2. pp. xiii-xvi
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  1. A Note on Names
  2. pp. xvii-xviii
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  1. List of Abbreviations
  2. pp. xix-xxii
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  1. Introduction: Work’s Meaning and Labor’s Power
  2. pp. 1-22
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  1. 1. The Labor of Love: Vocational Commitments in the Hospital
  2. pp. 23-48
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  1. 2. Losing It: The Limits of Economic Interestsand Political Power
  2. pp. 49-77
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  1. 3. A Struggle over New Things: Contesting Catholic Teaching
  2. pp. 78-102
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  1. 4. Winning the Heart Way: Organizing and Cultural Struggle
  2. pp. 103-125
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  1. 5. Trouble in the House of Labor: Alternative Visions of New Unionism
  2. pp. 126-144
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  1. Conclusion: What Should Unions Do?
  2. pp. 145-152
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  1. Notes
  2. pp. 153-166
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  1. Bibliography
  2. pp. 167-174
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  1. Index
  2. pp. 175-184
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Additional Information

ISBN
9780801464652
Related ISBN(s)
9780801450662, 9780801464188
MARC Record
OCLC
794489172
Pages
208
Launched on MUSE
2014-01-01
Language
English
Open Access
Yes

Copyright

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