Prerequisite ILR-222, Principles of Labor-Management Relations

This course investigates the outstanding developments and shifting relationships of the American industrial relations system. Major focus is given to the evolution of labor organization, management structure and government institutions. We investigate the development of union organization in the United States, the rise of the modern corporation and the managerial revolution in American business, and the development of the modern industrial relations system. Topics include craft production systems, craft union organization, closed shop agreements, Corporate organization, Taylorism and scientific management, mass production techniques, welfare capitalism,


It is expected that over the course of the semester students will develop:

  1. a knowledge of the origins and evolution of the American industrial relations system;
  2. an understanding of the institutional framework of the American industrial relation system; and
  3. the main features of the American system of shopfloor control.

Grading Standards

A "2.0" is an essay which accurately represents, reports or summarizes class material and is called for by the question posed. The key standards here are accuracy and appropriateness. A less than "2.0" answer misrepresents the arguments or evidence of others, or chooses issues that are not most relevant to the question posed.

A "3.0" accomplishes all that a "2.0" answer manages. That is, it accurately and appropriately represents the thoughts of others. In addition, a "3.0" essay shows the student's ability to use these ideas in a novel way. This might include comparing and contrasting two previously presented ideas which had not been directly compared together for the student. It may mean applying an idea to a novel circumstance or set of evidence. The distinction between a "2.0" and a "3.0" is this: A "2.0" asks, "Can you accurately repeat the ideas of others?" A "3.0" asks, "Can you use those ideas when they are taken out of the context in which they were originally presented?" The distinction is one between regurgitation and application.

A "4.0" accomplishes all the tasks of "2.0" and "3.0" essays. It accurately and appropriately replicates the ideas and evidence of others and it shows the student's ability to use those ideas in novel ways. In addition, a "4.0" essay establishes the student's ability to creatively and critically evaluate the ideas he or she has repeated and used. Not only can he or she repeat and use the ideas presented but the "4.0" student knows what they are worth; how they fit in; how to add to them. The "4.0" essay accurately perceives connections which have not been explicitly presented to the student. The "4.0" essay unearths the unspoken contradictions or the unmentioned applications of the presented material. In short, the "4.0" essay goes beyond the replication and manipulation of class material to establish the student's ability to creatively, critically and persuasively evaluate that material.


Plagiarism (cheating) is the use of another’s work or ideas without attribution. Paraphrasing a book without indicating where that material came from constitutes plagiarism as much as does copying from another student’s work. Plagiarism of any work required for this course will result in a grade of "0" for the course. The student’s name will then be reported to the proper college authorities so that administrative action can be taken.


Bruce Laurie, Artisans Into Workers: Labor in nineteenth-century America (New York: Noonday Press, 1989).

James Green, The World of the Worker: Labor in Twentieth-Century America (New York: Hill and Wang, 1980).

William E. Forbath, Law and the Shaping of the American Labor Movement (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1991).

Richard C. Edwards, The Contested Terrain: The transformation of the workplace in the twentieth century (New York: Basic, 1979).

David Brody, Workers in Industrial America: Essays on the 20th century struggle (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1980).

Hogler, Raymond L. "Law, Ideology, and Industrial Discipline: The Conspiracy Doctrine and the Rise of the Factory System," Dickinson Law Review 91 (1987): 697-end.

David M. Gordon, Richard C. Edwards, and Michael Riech, Segmented Work, Divided Workers: The Historical Transformation of Labor in the United States (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1982).

Danial Nelson, Managers and Workers: Origins of the New Factory System in the United States, 1880-1920 (Madison: University of Wisconsin Press, 1977).

Alfred D. Chandler, Jr., The Visible Hand: The Managerial Revolution in American Business (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1977).

James Weinstein, The Corporate Ideal in the Liberal State: 1900-1918 (Boston: Becon, 1968).

Gabriel Kolko, The Triumph of Conservatism: A Reinterpretation of American History, 1900-1916 (New York: The Free Press, 1963).

Christopher L. Tomlins, The State and the Unions: Labor Relations, Law, and the Organized Labor Movement in America, 1880-1960 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1985).

Martin J. Sklar, The Corporate Reconstruction of American Capitalism, 1890-1916: The Market, The Law, and Politics (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1988).

Gabriel Kolko, Main Currents in Modern American History (New York: Pantheon, 1984).

David Brody, Steelworkers in America: The Non-Union Era (New York: Harper and Row, 1963).

David Brody, Workers in Industrial America: Essays on the 20th Century Struggle (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1980).

David Montgomery, Worker's Control in America: Studies in the History of Work, Technology, and Labor Struggles (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1979).

David Montgomery, The Fall of the House of Labor: The Workplace, the State, and American Labor Activism, 1865-1925 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1988).

Nelson Lichtenstein, Labor's War at Home: The CIO in World War Two (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1982).

David E. Feller, "A General Theory of the Collective Bargaining Agreement," California Law Review 61 (May 1973).

William E. Forbath, "The Ambiguities of Free Labor: Labor and the Law in the Gilded Age," Wisconsin Law Review (1985).

Charles Sabel and Jonathan Zeitlin, "Historical Alternatives to Mass Production: Politics, Markets and Technology in Nineteenth Century Industrialization," Past and Present (August, 1985).

Harry Braverman, Labor and Monopoly Capital: The Degradation of Work in the Twentieth Century (New York: Monthly Review Press, 1974).

Dan Clawson, Bureaucracy and the Labor Process: The Transformation of U.S. Industry, 1860-1920 (New York: Monthly Review Press, 1980).

David Gartman, "Origins of the Assembly Line and Capitalist Control of Work at Ford," in Case Studies on the Labor Process, Andrew Zimbalist ed. (New York: Monthly Review Press, 1979).

Haggai Hurvitz, "American Labor Law and the Doctrine of Entrepreneurial Property Rights: Boycotts, Courts, and the Juridical Reorientation of 1886-1895," Industrial Relations Law Journal 8 (1986): 307-361.