Integration durch Arbeit? : Migranten und die Gewerkschaft am Beispiel der westdeutschen Werftindustrie 1960–1983

This study examines the role of trade unions and works councils in the context of labor migration in the West German shipbuilding industry from 1960 to 1983. Within two decades, originally booming and large shipyards were hit by an economic crisis with severe implications on the employment of migrant labor. Our findings, based on 29 oral history interviews with former staff of three leading shipyards and archival sources, show that although integration efforts existed, trade unions did not address emerging structural and subjective disadvantages and exclusions of workers with a migrant background. We identify discriminatory experiences, migratory agency and diverse union actor’s initiatives from below that have not been documented before.

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