Rules to Win by: Power and Participation in Union Negotiations

Regular price $ 29.95

by Jane McAlevey and Abby Lawlor

Oxford University Press

3/21/2023, hardcover

SKU: 9780197690468


Rules to Win By: Participation and Power in Union Negotiations is a book for anyone who wants to understand how to build the power required to effectively challenge and reverse income inequality and attacks on democracy. Drawing insights from recent hard-won unionization and contract negotiation fights, Jane McAlevey and Abby Lawlor use lessons from some of the toughest fights today--preparing a durable, all-out strike in a union-hostile environment--to provide a masterclass in participatory social change, indispensable both within and beyond the workplaces where we spend half of our waking lives.

In an era of polarization, big lies, and massive legislative setbacks, changemakers in every arena need to learn the skills and lessons honed in pitched battles against experienced and ruthless union busters. Rules to Win By is a book for workers, unionists, racial justice and climate campaigners, academics, policymakers and everyone who wants a more fair and democratic society.


"Negotiation should be a process of creative aggression, not technocratic dealmaking that fractures class consciousness. McAlevey and Lawlor persuasively show how democratized and disciplined mass participation creates the power in confrontation required to win--for unionists and for all movements for justice. Here we can see abolition as life in rehearsal." -- Ruth Wilson Gilmore, author, Abolition Geography

"As McAlevey and Lawlor convincingly and movingly show, the way for unions to win big is by engaging in open and democratic negotiations. But the wisdom in these pages is universal and applies well beyond organized labor. Whatever cause you are fighting for, let this brilliant book be your guide." -- Astra Taylor, co-founder of the Debt Collective and author of Democracy May Not Exist, but We'll Miss It When It's Gone

About the Authors:

Jane McAlevey is an organizer, author, and scholar. She is currently a Senior Policy Fellow at the University of California at Berkeley's Labor Center, part of the Institute for Labor & Employment Relations.

Abby Lawlor is an organizer and labor lawyer based in Seattle, Washington. She is currently a legal fellow at Public Rights Project.