It has been a common assumption that the ‘third wave’ of democratisation, the end of the Cold War, and the spread of neoliberal globalisation in the latter part of the 20th century have helped to create an environment in which organised labour is better placed to overcome bureaucratic national unionism and transform itself into a potential counter-globalisation movement. However, Kevin Gray argues that despite the apparent continued phenomena of labour militancy and the rhetoric of anti-neoliberalism, the mainstream independent labour movement in Korea has become increasingly institutionalised and bureaucratised into the new capitalist democracy. This process is demonstrated by the Korean Confederation of Trade Unions’ experience of participation in various forms of policy making forums. Gray suggests that as a result, the KCTU has failed to mount an effective challenge against processes of neoliberal restructuring and concomitant social polarisation.
The Korean experience provides an excellent case study for understanding the relationship between organised labour and globalisation. Korean Workers and Neoliberal Globalisation will appeal to students and scholars of Korean studies and International Political Economy, as well as Asian politics and economics.
Kevin Gray is RCUK Research Fellow in the Department of International Relations, University of Sussex.
New economies create enormous potential, but it will require great care for the people of the region to steer through a period of profound change. Political and economic interests intent on maintaining the flow of petroleum products on one hand, and people in the Gulf region who assess their won interests from quite a different perspective, on the other, exert pressures from conflicting directions. Reconciling these interests in a time of rapid globalization poses enormous challenges.
This timely volume brings together the work of scholars from both the Middle East and the West who have the expertise to evaluate the interaction of new ideas, new technologies and new economies. Brought together by the American University of Sharjah and the Sociological Association of the UAE, the contributors reflect on both the process of globalism and on the traditions of Gulf society and culture, offering views on how these trends interact within the global system.
The book discusses how the highway was a symbol for an imagined national identity, and goes on to look at how it offered Pakistan a pre-Partition history and a fixed territory, by providing a historical link to the Silk Route and a contemporary geographical linkage to Central Asia. Examining the influence of the diverse travellers along the Karakoram Highway, the book shows how global flows of development, trade, labour, and tourism have remapped the Pakistani nation-state and reshaped the local. Providing a fresh perspective on the nation-state of Pakistan, this book is an important contribution to studies on South Asian History, Anthropology, Politics and Geography.
Labour and Development in East Asia shows that such inter-linkages between labour, geopolitical transformations, and states’ developmental strategies have been much more central to East Asia’s development than has commonly been recognised. By adopting an explanatory framework of the labour-geopolitics-development nexus, the book theorises and provides an historical analysis of the formation and transformation of the East Asian regional political economy from the end of the Second World War to the present, with particular reference to Japan, South Korea, Taiwan and China.
This book will be required reading for students and scholars of international relations, development studies and comparative politics.
This book was originally published as a special issue of Third World Quarterly.