This issue's Up for Debate section features a lively exchange of responses by four scholars to David Witwer on the subject of labor historians and the problem of union corruption. Highlighting an extended but uneven literature on the subject stretching back to Commons-School practitioners, Witwer tweaks recent-day labor historians for turning away from close examination of the underside of labor movements—a side that antilabor political forces have been all too eager to manipulate to their advantage. A distinguished group of respondents—Andrew Wender Cohen, Rosemary Feuer, Joshua Freeman, and Jennifer Luff—receive his message with a mixture of appreciation, discomfort, and veiled criticism.
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Labor and Working-Class History Association