China Worker Roundtable: A Reminder

by Paul Garver

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Chinese workers are continuing a wave of strikes for higher wages and, in some cases, for the right to elect their own local union officers.

At the same time, Hewlett-Packard and Apple have claimed that they are requiring their manufacturing suppliers in China, the largest of which is Foxconn, to correct numerous abuses, including excessive forced overtime, the abuse of student interns, and to promise to allow elections for local union committees.

China labor expert Eli Friedman has forcefully argued in The Jacobin that ultimately the liberation of workers in China can only arise from their self activity. He predicts that as manufacturers build new factories deeper in China’s interior, closer to the villages from which most of the new industrial workers are recruited, those workers are likely to demand greater political rights and social benefits. This would advance their industrial action to a new level of working class consciousness.

Three of the most prominent scholars of Chinese labor from around the world will join Eli Friedman in a roundtable discussion at 4:00 PM on Sunday March 17 at the CUNY Murphy Institute, 25 W 43rd St, 18th floor, Manhattan. The roundtable is moderated by Seth Ackerman of  Jacobin Magazine and is co-sponsored by Talking Union and by Labor Notes.

For more details, please click here. The event is free to the public, and all are welcome.

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