The Puzzle of Strikes: Class and State Strategies in Postwar Italy (Cambridge Studies in Comparative Politics)

The Puzzle of Strikes: Class and State Strategies in Postwar Italy (Cambridge Studies in Comparative Politics)

Roberto Franzosi

Language: English

Pages: 530

ISBN: 0521452872

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

Focusing on the strategic interaction among workers, employers, and the state, this book examines the temporal movement of postwar Italian strikes. Incorporating several theoretical approaches and based on many forms of empirical evidence (statistical, historical, ethnographic, and survey), The Puzzle of Strikes is unique in its broad concern with a variety of actors, theories, and forms of empirical evidence.

A Small Place in Italy



















effects 73 Nonperiodic cycles of numbers of strikes, strikers, and hours lost 74 Chronology of Italian business cycles between 1945 and 1983 75 Distribution of the labor force by sector and period (%) 76 Hire rates for blue-collar workers in Milanese firms (1959-62) 81 Historical transformation of the job hierarchy in Italian firms (1950-68) 83 Distribution of Italian plants by size (number of plants per size class) 85 Distribution of Italian plants by size (total number of employees per size

(Mauro, 1982; Reder and Neumann, 1980). But, in fact, would perfect knowledge of the parties' concession curves necessarily result in a "withering away of strikes"? The answer depends on some basic tacit premises of the "perfect knowledge" argument: that workers and employers agree on the overall framework of a capitalist society, that they share a fundamental agreement regarding the form of the distribution of resources (profit and wages), and that workers question only the terms of that

durations. What does come as a surprise, however, is the fact that the duration of strikes in 1962, the peak year in When do workers strike? How the economy matters 95 Italy's "economic miracle," should show durations that are just as long. Similar outcomes for different underlying causes can only leave us quite baffled. My analyses of the structural characteristics of the Italian economy have been aimed at disentangling short-term and long-term relationships between strikes and the economy.

and the numbers of strikes, strikers, and hours lost, by the scope of strikes, provide further evidence on the relationships among organizational strength, labormarket tightness, and strike behavior. The only positive coefficients are those between industry and multiple-industry strikes and the unemployment rate. It would appear that workers rely on centralized, politicized, large-scale actions, as measured by industry and multiple-industry strikes, when their economicbargaining power is low, as

manuscript for copyediting, Giulio was always there ready to grapple one more time with The Puzzle, providing bibliographical references and data and sharing with me his views on the current state of labor relations. Isidoro Mariani's and Massimo Pagani's knowledge of the details and hidden idiosyncrasies of many Italian data series was invaluable. More than ten years have now lapsed, and so has much of my arrogant belief in high-powered statistics. Gwillym Jenkins, already dying from leukemia,

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