Syndicalism

Syndicalism is a current in the labor movement to establish local, worker-based organizations and advance the demands and rights of workers through strikes. Most active in the early 20th century, syndicalism was predominant in the revolutionary left in the decade which preceded the outbreak of World War I because orthodox Marxism was mostly reformist at that time, according to the Marxist historian Eric Hobsbawm.[1]

Demonstration by the Argentine syndicalist union FORA in 1915

Major syndicalist organizations included the General Confederation of Labor in France, the National Confederation of Labour in Spain, the Italian Syndicalist Union, the Free Workers' Union of Germany, and the Argentine Regional Workers' Federation. Although they did not regard themselves as syndicalists, the Industrial Workers of the World, the Irish Transport and General Workers' Union and the Canadian One Big Union are considered by most historians to belong to this current.

A number of syndicalist organizations were and still are to this day linked in the International Workers' Association, but some of its member organizations left for the International Confederation of Labor, formed in 2018.