Charles W. Romney has written a detailed account of the interplay between the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) and the various labor unions that organized canneries under both the AFL’s and the CIO’s umbrellas. His is a very welcome addition to the ongoing “declension” debate among historians who study labor from the New Deal through the beginnings of the Cold War. Not surprisingly to many of us whose focus remains centered on workers who were the lowest paid, whose employment was the least stable or seasonal, and who were far more likely to be people of color and women, you find here the expected mix of Communist and Left- led — what you might call “anti- establishment” — organizers. Also not surprisingly, you find them making the same arguments about why the AFL’s and some of the CIO’s organizing policies just...

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