Maximum Working Class Unity? Challenges to Local Social Movement Unionism in Cape Town
This thesis examines the obstacles encountered by organised workers and poor communities
trying to unite their forces in post-apartheid South Africa. South African trade unions fight for
decent job conditions in a society undergoing constant change. While keeping a steady course
away from its apartheid past, the country gets all the more enveloped in the global economy.
Some observers of this globalisation call for organised labour to forge alliances with other
progressive forces in civil society to stand their ground. Such an alliance requires a trade union
reaching beyond the realm of production, including a wider set of issues onto their agenda. This
is not an unfamiliar approach to the workers of South Africa. Trade unions can proudly look
back on an anti-apartheid struggle where strong alliances across society formed the backbone of
their political opposition ...