Wednesday, May 23, 2012


In 1905 representatives of 43 groups who opposed the policies of American Federation of Labour, formed the radical labour organisation, the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW). The IWW's goal was to promote worker solidarity in the revolutionary struggle to overthrow the employing class. Its motto was "an injury to one is an injury to all". Many unions refused to accept immigrant workers. This was especially a problem for Jewish and Irish immigrants. This was not true of the Industrial Workers of the World and as a result many of its members were first and second generation immigrants. Several immigrants such as Mary 'Mother' Jones, Hubert Harrison, Carlo Tresca, Arturo Giovannitti and Joe Haaglund Hill became leaders of the organization.

The Industrial Workers of the World (Wobblies) was a radical syndicalist labor union. Composed primarily of unemployed and homeless workers, including dissatisfied elements from the lumber industry, Their voices for social and economic justice. Tom Morello is the Harvard-educated guitarist who dabbled in politics, then chose rock music to make a difference.
Two things that inspire me about the Wobblies is it was a singing union, first of all. And they realized that, in order to organize diverse groups of immigrants who often didn't speak the same language, they would do it through song. And their solidarity came through music.And Joe Hill, the great poet laureate of the early 20th century, you know, said, "You--" I'm paraphrasing. But--"A pamphlet you'll read once. But a song you can sing again and again and stays in your heart."

Ted Rudow III,MA

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