This collection of essays offers a comprehensive examination of
the working class experience in British Columbia and contains
essential background knowledge for an understanding of contemporary
relations between government, labour, and employees. It treats
workers' relationship to the province's resource base, the economic
role of the state, the structure of capitalism, the labour market
and the influence of ethnicity and race on class relations.
Using different analytical categories and based on primary
research, the individual studies provide new assessments of the
development of capitalist relations of production; the way new
economic developments changed old and traditional cultures; the
connection between the demand for labour and the immigration
policy; the impact of technology on work relations; and the various
responses of labour to the policies of the state and capital
Articles focusing on episodes from the 1870s to the present deal
with major staple industries such as the early fur trade, fishing,
mining, and forestry and with the struggle of labourers against
their employers in communities such as New Westminster and Fraser
Mills and in specific sectors such as telecommunications and
education. Many of the analyses show that ethnicity acts both as a
focus of integration and resistance against external forces in the
larger society and as a point of division and antagonism internal
to the working class.
The activities of the working class and its relationships to
other parts of society are of primary importance in explaining
social and economic change in the province and in the country.
Workers, Capital, and the State in British Columbia will be of
interest to students of class, labour, and community relations.
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