Ours to Master and to Own


Capitalism would have us believe we need our bosses. This volume reveals the history of workers who dare to disagree.

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Workers’ Control from the Commune to the Present

By Immanuel Ness & Dario Azzellini
Haymarket Books

From the dawning of the industrial epoch, wage earners have organized themselves into unions, fought bitter strikes, and gone so far as to challenge the very premises of the system by creating institutions of democratic self-management aimed at controlling production without bosses. With specific examples drawn from every corner of the globe and every period of modern history, this pathbreaking volume comprehensively traces this often underappreciated historical tradition. Ripe with lessons drawn from historical and contemporary struggles for workers’ control, Ours to Master and to Own is essential reading for those struggling to create a new world from the ashes of the old.

“The seemingly logical and just idea that workers themselves should make the decisions regarding and reap the benefits of their labor has always been a fraught concept with the potential to topple or reform whole societies… This ambitious, copiously researched, and clearly written text provides a sweeping diversity of examples, analyzed with cool detachment from the specific politics but with underlying passion for the larger concept.”—Kari Lydersen, author of Revolt on Goose Island and Mayor 1%

“Ness and Azzellini have made a major contribution in producing this insightful and exciting collection of essays on the question of workers’ control… it is timely and offers great strategic insight.”—Bill Fletcher, Jr., coauthor of Solidarity Divided

Additional information

Weight 22.3 oz
Dimensions 9 × 6 × 1.25 in