1924 IWW split and 1930s regrowth

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syndicalist
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Apr 29 2017 21:40
1924 IWW split and 1930s regrowth

Perhaps an overkill of effort here, as I posted this on my FB age and got some decent convo going.
Maybe there's others here who might have some additional thoughts and insights.

I'm looking for some good links (both pro-and-con) on the 1924 IWW split between the so-call decentralizers and so-called centralizers. Additionally, if there is any published materials (links or in print) on post 1924 split where the IWW concentrated on union rebuilding ---- as a union of functioning unions.

Between the time of the split and say, closer to 1930, union organizing seemed to be at a low(lowest) point, with different internal debates, etc taking a more center stage. It then started to pick up, gain some speed, take on a more vigorous part of activities again.

I am asking strictly out of historical curiosity and not to engage in partisan flame throwing.

Thanks for any assist.

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Juan Conatz
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Apr 30 2017 02:09

There's not a lot of easily-available detailed information on the split, unfortunately. Eric Chester's recent book, The Wobblies in Their Heyday: The Rise and Destruction of the Industrial Workers of the World during the World War I Era, I *think* talks a lot about the split. I have not read it. I think some of the Industrial Workers and Industrial Pioneers I have uploaded or still need to upload may have polemics from the time.

syndicalist
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Apr 30 2017 03:09

Thanks. I've seen the Chester book mentioned a number if time by multiple folks
I'll see if I can get a cheapie copy

Looking forward to 1923 and 1924 Industrial Woker
On line here at libcom

asn
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Apr 30 2017 12:59

You also need to look at the split and the later mayhem associated with the two IWW's engaging in organising drives in certain areas in terms of State and employer manipulation via spies/agent provocateurs to wreck the organisation In Ward Churchill's book "Agents of Repression". He sees the split.etc in the context of an early Cointelpro operation and in Rexroth's autobiography/memoir - "an autobiographical novel", Rexroth mentions himself and a friend uncovering files about various private dectective spies involved in the split. They had been given access to an insurance company building for work there and obtained the info. It certainly wasn't just based on genuine differences of opinion.

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Juan Conatz
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Feb 4 2018 00:07

^ For sure. There's inevitably agents of the state involved in conflicts like that.

But I does seem there were actual issues at the heart of the split. The relation between the General Administration and the Industrial Union/branches is something that has never been resolved, probably could never be resolved, and exists as an issue periodically in the IWW. There were also issues with how to related to the Communist Party. The CP and how to relate to it caused many organizational and ideological splits at the time. And they were definitely in the IWW. The CP had people in the IWW until possibly 1930. Lastly, the repression did in fact wipe out through imprisonment, deportation and harassment two important parts of the organization: the formal leadership (officers, editors, staff) and the informal leadership (workplace organizers, local officers, etc.). Think of any organization you have been in experiencing a suddent vaccuum like this. There would most likely be major conflict about establishing the norms, leadership and leading ideas in that org.

ajjohnstone
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Feb 4 2018 03:37

The CP certainly was a knife in the back of the Canadian OBU, joining together with the official trade union organisation, the employers and the State to neutralise the OBU