The Internationalisation of the Labour Question

Ideological Antagonism, Workers’ Movements and the ILO since 1919

  • Stefano Bellucci
  • Holger Weiss

Part of the Palgrave Studies in the History of Social Movements book series (PSHSM)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xxxi
  2. Stefano Bellucci, Holger Weiss
    Pages 1-19
  3. Global Dimensions and Issues

  4. Continental, Regional and National Histories

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 163-163
    2. Silke Neunsinger, M. V. Shobhana Warrier
      Pages 329-350
  5. Post-Face

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 409-409
    2. David Mayer, Marcel van der Linden
      Pages 411-420
  6. Back Matter
    Pages 421-436

About this book


This edited collection is a global history of workers’ organisations since 1919, the year when the International Labour Organisation (ILO), the Comintern and the International Federation of Trade Unions were formed. This historical moment represents a caesura in labour history as it epitomises the beginning of what the editors and the contributors in this book call the internationalisation of the labour question. The case studies in this centenary volume analyse the relationship between global workers’ organisations and the new ideological confrontation between liberal capitalism, socialism and communism since the Bolshevik Revolution in Russia.  Workers’ organisations, trade unions in particular, grew in importance and managed to organise internationally, forming alliances cemented by ideology and sustained by international institutional bodies or centrals. In the nascent capitalist versus communist struggle, trade unions thrived. Is it mere coincidence that today’s decline of unionism coincides with the end of ideological antagonism? This book emphasises important global labour issues such as gender as well as international workers’ histories from Latin America, Asia and Africa.


International Labour Organization ILO World Federation of Trade Unions Communist International Capitalism Socialism Workers' struggles Anarchy Workers' rights Unemployment Historical legacy

Editors and affiliations

  • Stefano Bellucci
    • 1
  • Holger Weiss
    • 2
  1. 1.Institute for HistoryLeiden UniversityLeidenThe Netherlands
  2. 2.Department of HistoryÅbo Akademi UniversityTurkuFinland

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s), under exclusive license to Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020
  • Publisher Name Palgrave Macmillan, Cham
  • eBook Packages History
  • Print ISBN 978-3-030-28234-9
  • Online ISBN 978-3-030-28235-6
  • Buy this book on publisher's site