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De Gruyter publishes the Handbook Global History of Work

De Gruyter Open


IMAGE: This is the cover Handbook History of Work. view more 

Credit: De Gruyter

De Gruyter is pleased to announce the publication of the new standard reference work for historians, "Handbook Global History of Work". The 600-page work, edited by Marcel van der Linden and Karin Hofmeester of the International Institute of Social History in Amsterdam, provides insight to various aspects of work in a global and long-term context. Topics include penal and slave labor as well as salaried work, economic migration, textile workers, labor organizations, strikes and worker motivation. This first handbook of the global history of work contains contributions from the most respected researchers in the field.

Coffee from East Africa, wine from California and chocolate from Côte d'Ivoire: all of these products that many of us consume regularly are based on labor processes - often under inhuman conditions - but always based on a combination of various work processes which are often unfamiliar. What are the daily routines of workers in different parts of the world, and how have they changed over time? What do contemporary work processes look like, and what were they like in the past? These, and many other questions are the subject of the global history of work - a relatively new discipline, which is presented in this handbook which not only provides an overview of research findings, but which also seeks to be the basis of further research.

It begins with an outline of regional developments from almost all geographic areas of the world. Individual industrial sectors are examined as well as the many different forms of work that exist, including several models of the very varied forms of employer-employee relations across the globe. How workers react to political and socioeconomic upheaval is covered as well as the attitude to work and to workers, including itinerant workers and forms of work oversight,

Finally, the forms of organized industrial action and strikes by different types of workers is also studied.


Some of the finest researchers in the field have contributed to this work: Jan Lucassen (salaried employment), Eileen Boris (domestic work), Bill Freund (Sub-Saharan-Africa), Therese Garstenauer (administrative personnel), Ad Knotter (mining), Patrick Manning (slave labor) und Susan Zimmermann (Eastern Europe).

The book will be presented by the editors and many of the contributors within the context of the European Social Science History Conference (ESSHC) in Belfast in April 2018.

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