Why I Am Blogging About Labor

Published August 8th, 2013 -  - 08.08.131


My academic fields of expertise are at the intersection of national security law and international law, and I already blog at a site devoted to these topics.  One thus might wonder why I am participating in this blog on labor law and politics.  The short answer is that I grew up in a labor family, I have had a significant intellectual interest in labor history and politics for several years, and I am in the process of writing a book about Jimmy Hoffa’s place in American political and legal history.  I have nothing like Ben’s experience or expertise in this area, my interests are more selective than his, and I will almost certainly post less frequently than he will.  But my outlook differs as well, and hopefully the labor literature I will be reading over the next few years, and my reactions to it, will be of some interest to some readers.  Right now I am reading Nelson Lichtenstein’s terrific (and 16-year-old) biography of Walter Reuther, which has interesting implications for the modern American labor movement, some of which I hope to sketch when I am done.

Our ambition for the site is to make it a place to collect and analyze the important events of the day – in law and politics – that relate to labor, unions, and workers.  We will be offering commentary on important cases, laws, political developments, and the like, and we hope to build a daily “news and commentary” summary and student-written “explainer” posts as well.  Ben and I each have particular takes on these issues, but our aim is to keep the analysis and conversation — with each other, and others outside the site — civil and constructive.

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