Catherwood Library Takes on the Books that Shaped Work in America

The following post was co-authored by Aliqae Geraci, a Murphy Institute Labor Studies Masters Alum and now a research librarian at the Martin P. Catherwood Library, part of the School of Industrial and Labor Relations at Cornell University; and Jessica Withers, a library communications and development assistant. The articled was originally posted on the U.S. Department of Labor Blog. 

As staff of Catherwood Library, one of the few dedicated labor relations libraries in U.S., we are always looking out for innovative ways to join and facilitate conversations about work and labor. As avid readers of the Labor Department’s blog and newsletter, we were thrilled to learn about the list of Books that Shaped Work in America − an initiative of the department and the Library of Congress Center for the Book − and knew immediately that we wanted to be part of the project. It was a moment for us to reiterate our commitment to collecting and preserving the literature and research of labor and the workplace. Our main reading room display was the perfect setting to showcase many books on the list during the spring 2014 semester. Jessica Withers designed the display, creating placards echoing the design of the Books that Shaped Work in America initiative and pulling content from our collection of over 200,000 items. Catherwood owns about half the 100 titles originally selected for the list, and many more are scattered across the numerous libraries at Cornell University. We were able to show the depth and breadth of Catherwood holdings, including a 1974 first edition of Studs Terkel’s “Working” and the graphic adaptation illustrated by Harvey Pekar.

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The Murphy Institute’s free College Prep Program is now accepting applications

The Murphy Institute College Prep Program is now accepting applications from union members and working adults who would like to take college prep classes. These classes are designed to help prepare adults for the CUNY admissions tests. Classes are offered in math and reading/writing in the afternoon and the evening. These tuition-free classes meet twice a week. The early application deadline for the fall semester is June 23rd. Please contact Abraham Marcus by email (abraham.marcus[at]mail.cuny[dot]edu) or phone (212-642-2040) if you are interested in applying.

Southern Labor Studies Association is accepting essay submissions for the Robert H. Zieger Prize

The Southern Labor Studies Association (SLSA) announces the Robert H. Zieger Prize for the best essay in Southern Labor Studies. This prize has been established with the cooperation of the Zieger family and members of the SLSA. The SLSA encourages the study and teaching of southern working-class history, and builds connections between labor activists and academics to encourage a greater understanding of the diverse experiences and cultures of workers in the South, broadly defined.

This prize will be awarded every two years to the best article in southern labor studies submitted by a graduate student or early career scholar, journalist, or activist (“early career” being defined as no more than five years beyond the author’s highest degree).

Find Out More!

Save the Date! Organizing 2.0, June 6-7, 2014 A conference for organizers, techies & activists @ Murphy

organzing 2.0

Organizing 2.0 brings together hundreds of leaders, organizers, fundraisers, techies and activists to share our collective wisdom, skills, and talents. There will be workshops, trainings, discussions, consulting and networking opportunities, visionary speakers, and a provocative debate around strategy and practices.

Over two days here at the Murphy Institute, we will bring together hundreds of people to learn from each other, share stories and strategies and build our skills, organizations and movements. Featured tracks focusing on online to offline organizing, digital strategy, member engagement and much more.
Register here: http://www.conference.organizing20.org/
Scholarships are available.
For more information, email clenchner[at]organizing20[dot]org

Note: this post is from 2014. The 2015 Organizing 2.0 conference will be held April 10-11 at the Murphy Institute.

The Significance of the TWU and UFT Labor Contracts

Written by James Parrott, the Chief Economist at the Fiscal Policy Institute

For the first time in nearly five years, major labor agreements were recently reached covering public sector workers in New York City. On April 17, Transport Workers Union (TWU) Local 100 concluded a new 5-year contract dating from January 2012 covering 34,000 workers at the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA), most of whom work for the subway and bus system in New York City. Two weeks later on May 1, the United Federation of Teachers (UFT) reached a 9-year agreement with the City of New York stretching back to November 2009 that affects over 100,000 public school teachers and support staff.

Both contracts represented a breakthrough in ending managements’ demands for a 3-year wage freeze that had grown out of a counter-productive post-Great Recession conservative infatuation with public sector austerity, or more precisely, a mindset that held that workers had to sacrifice to help clean up the economic mess caused by financial sector excesses.

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