9/9 - Discussion Pt 1: Subterranean Fire: A History of Working-Class Radicalism in the United States

Join us as we begin discussing Subterranean Fire: A History of Working-Class Radicalism in the United States by Sharon Smith.

Wed 9/9 7-8:30pm
University of Washington School of Social Work Room 032
4101 15th Avenue NE

For the First part of the discussion we will cover the first four chapters of the book, taking us from 1865 up to the eve of WWII. Part two of the discussion, covering the remainder of the book - WWI through the Employers offensive and the rule of the neocons will take place on September 23rd.

This accessible, critical history of the U.S. labor movement examines the hidden history of workers’ resistance from the nineteenth century to the present. Workers in the U.S. have a rich tradition of fighting back which remains largely hidden. Subterranean Fire brings that history to light and reveals its lessons for today.

The title is taken from the inspiring words of August Spies, a U.S. radical and labor activist executed during the fight for the eight-hour day. He said, “If you think that by hanging us you can stamp out the labor movement, then hang us. Here you will tread upon a spark, but here, and there, and behind you, and in front of you, the flames will blaze up. It is a subterranean fire. You cannot put it out. The ground is on fire upon which you stand.” These words remain fundamentally true today, as Sharon Smith demonstrates by tracing the legacy of worker’s struggle from August Spies’ days to the present.

You can pick up the book at any ISO tabling event or buy it online from Haymarket Books