From Crisis to Austerity: Neoliberalism, Organized Labour and the Canadian State

From Crisis to Austerity: Neoliberalism, Organized Labour and the Canadian State

The Great Recession was the largest crisis of capitalism since the Great Depression and the largest crisis in neoliberalism to date, sending shockwaves throughout the global economy. States scrambled to right the sinking capitalist ship in order to maintain high levels of accumulation. In Canada, as in so many other countries, the state introduced austerity measures aimed at organized labour and the broader working class. This volume explores the political economy of The Great Recession in Canada, and focuses on how labour has responded to the crisis, neoliberalism, and austerity measures.

Book Details

Edited by: Tim Fowler
ISBN: 978-1926958231
Year: 2013
Pages: 226
Price: $32.50 USD

Table of Contents

1. From Crisis To Austerity: An Introduction
Tim Fowler

2. The Canadian State and the Crisis: Theoretical and Historical Context
Stephen McBride & Heather Whiteside

3. From the Great Recession of 2008-2009 to Fiscal Austerity: The Role of Inequality
Akhter Faroque and Brian K. MacLean

4. Neoliberalism, Capitalist Crisis, and Continuing Austerity in the Ontario State
Tim Fowler

5. Collective Bargaining in a Time of Austerity: Public-Sector Unions and the University Sector in Ontario
Mathew Nelson & James Meades

6. “We Will Fight This Crisis”: Auto Workers Resist an Industrial Meltdown
Bill Murnighan & Jim Stanford

7. The Decline of the Labour Movement: A Socialist Perspective
Murray E.G. Smith & Jonah Butovsky

8. Labour’s Response to the Crisis and the Future of Working-Class Politics
David Camfield


“…[a] thought-provoking collection on contemporary austerity and the attack on labour reveals how divergent interpretations of capitalist crisis frame different understandings of the contemporary crisis of the workers’ movement.”

Bryan D. Palmer is Canada Research Chair at Trent University, author of James P. Cannon and the Origins of the American Revolutionary Left, 1890-1928 and Editor of Labour/Le Travail.


“..a big-picture look at how Canadian governments and business sought solutions favouring the wealthy at the expense of an ever more constrained labour movement. The collection will be a critical read for anyone seeking a comprehensive account of the crisis and how Canada’s politics of austerity have affected unions and workers across the country.”

John Peters teaches labour studies at Laurentian University and is editor of Boom, Bust, Crisis: Labour, Corporate Power, and Politics in 21st Century Canada

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