LaborhistoryJanuary21 - Labor history I American...

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Labor history January 21, 2008 I. American Exceptionalism a. First Definition: US is guiding beacon of light for rest of the world to strive to become b. Second: More Scholarly Question: Are there sociological issues that make US different than other countries? i. Nature of class formation in America ii. The way classes formed in the US opposed to European countries make it unique 1. Other industrialized countries have labor parties- we do not 2. Our political parties do not define themselves by classes 3. Politics not defined by workers vs. bosses c. Why is US different? i. Geography ii. Culture of Individualism- why? 1. American Dream/ Mobility iii. Religion iv. Origins of Republic 1. Nature of people that came- capitalist 2. Puritans 3. “Protestant Work Ethic” 4. No feudalism v. Diversity 1. Immigration 2. Race (scabs) vi. World Power 1. Nationalism 2. Success vii. This question most efficiently posed in 1904 by Werner Sombart 1. Wrote Essay: “Why no Socialism in US?” 2. No real labor party, class identity fractured 3. Answer: Success.
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