Highly acclaimed and widely read, American Workers, American Unions (first published in 1986, revised ed. 1994) provides a concise and compelling history of American workers and their unions in twentieth-century America. This new edition features new chapters on the pre-1920 period, as well as an entirely new final chapter that covers developments of the 1980s and 1990s in detail. There the authors explore how economic change, union stagnation, and antilabor policies have combined to erode workers' standards and labor's influence in the political arena over the last two decades. They review current "alternatives to unionism" as means of achieving fair workplace representations but insist that strong unions remain essential in a democratic society. They argue that labor's new responsiveness to the concerns of women, minority groups, and low-wage workers, as well as its resurgent political activism, offer new hope for trade unionism. Also included in this third edition is new bibliographical material and a regularly updated on-line link to an extended bibliographical essay.
Robert H. Zieger is a professor of history at the University of Florida. Gilbert J. Gall is currently a service representative of health care employees for Health Care-PSEA, and is the author of The Politics of Right to Work and Pursuing Justice: Lee Pressman, The New Deal, and the CIO.