|Title||The Double Confrontation of Grassroots Unionism in Argentina: Union Democratization and Defense of Working Conditions|
|Publication Type||Journal Article|
|Year of Publication||2015|
|Authors||Arias, Cora Cecilia, Menéndez, Nicolás Diana, and Salgado, Paula Dinorah|
|Journal||Latin American Perspectives|
|Pagination||12 - 29|
|Keywords||Argentina, grassroots organizations, subway workers, union democratization, unionism, working conditions, workplace|
Social conflicts in Argentina over the past decade have retrieved the essence of the capitalist dispute: the struggle between capital and labor as situated in the workplace and no longer across urban space as it was in the 1990s. In this context, both institutionalized and alternative union expressions regained their centrality for analyzing social reality. The revitalization of collective bargaining and the consequent repositioning of unions on the labor and political scene activated grassroots dynamics that sometimes challenged existing union structures. Few experiences of resistance were able to alter the balance of power as much as the workers’ organization of the Buenos Aires subway. This organization was able to achieve such gains because of a combination of the strategic importance of the subway to the city’s production and reproduction, the fact that the privatization of the firm was a time-limited concession rather than a direct sale, the union tradition and workers’ awareness of lost rights, and the incorporation of new workers with a history of political militancy.