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BWLI Students and Committee

UMass sociologist to speak at MCLA

02/11/2010

NORTH ADAMS, Mass. - "The Labor Movement and the Future of Work in the U.S." will be the focus of a presentation at Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts (MCLA) by labor movement activist and singer-songwriter Tom Juravich, Ph.D., a labor studies professor at U-Mass-Amherst, on Thursday, Feb. 5, at 7 p.m. in Murdock Hall room 218.

The event is free and open to the public.

Juravich is the author of "At the Altar of the Bottom Line: The Degradation of Work in the 21st Century."  During his presentation, he will present the book's findings, which focus on four case studies: unionized customer service reps at Verizon, unionized registered nurses at Boston Medical Center, Guatemalan immigrants working at a New Bedford fish processing plant, and  unionized machinists who fight to keep their Jones Beloit industrial plant open in Dalton, Mass.

An accomplished folk singer, Juravich also will sing and play the guitar at this event. He recently wrote four new songs, each based on one of the four case studies he examines in his book.

The director of the UMass Amherst Labor Relations and Research Center (LRRC) and director of the LRRC's Union Leadership and Administration program, Juravich focuses his research on union organizing, comprehensive campaigns, the nature of work, and labor history and culture.

Outside of the academic setting, Juravich has shown significant interest in labor culture, such as folk songs, music, poems, photography, folk art and stories. For several years, he has collected folk songs and picket line music from the American labor movement.

One of Juravich's best-known works is "Ravenswood: The Steelworkers' Victory and the Revival of American Labor," a book he co-authored with Kate Bronfenbrenner.

"At the Altar of the Bottom Line: The Degradation of Work in the 21st Century" will be sold at the event. It includes a CD with his songs, as well as some of the taped interviews he has conducted.

For more information about this event, contact Dr. Maynard Seider, MCLA sociology professor, 413-662-5476. For more information about Juravich, go to www.tomjuravich.com/altar .