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American Federation of Labor

Compare the American Federation of Labor's trade unionism with reformist unions such as the Knights of Labor and the National Labor Union. What are some of the drawbacks to the AFL's pragmatic trade unionism?

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1. Compare the American Federation of Labor's trade unionism with reformist unions such as the Knights of Labor and the National Labor Union. What are some of the drawbacks to the AFL's pragmatic trade unionism?

American Federation of Labor (AFL)

AFL was one of the first federations of labor unions in the United States. It was founded in Columbus, Ohio in 1886 by Samuel Gompers as a reorganization of its predecessor, the Federation of Organized Trades and Labor Unions. Gompers was the president of the AFL until his death in 1924. The AFL was the largest union grouping in the United States for the first half of the twentieth century, even after the creation of the Congress of Industrial Organizations (CIO) by unions that left the AFL in 1938 over its opposition to organizing mass production industries. (DRAWBACK) While the union was founded and dominated by craft unions throughout the first fifty years of its existence, many of its craft union affiliates turned to organizing on an industrial basis to ...

Solution Summary

Compares the American Federation of Labor's trade unionism with reformist unions such as the Knights of Labor and the National Labor Union. It also discusses some of the drawbacks to the AFL's pragmatic trade unionism. References provided.

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