Dissertation Topic: "National Liberation and Worker Militancy in the Third World: A World-Historical Perspective on Worker-occupied and Self-managed Workplaces"
The greater part of my intellectual work deals with worker-occupied and self-managed workplaces outside Western Europe and North America from 1917-present. In my dissertation, I focus on worker self-management both as a strategy of economic delinking in the context of the national liberation movements of the mid-20th century, and as a crucial form of resistance to colonialism and empire. I examine labor movements in Asia, Africa and Latin America during the mid-20th century, highlighting the creation of worker-occupied and self-managed workplaces. As the current largest worker-occupied and self-managed firm, Indian Coffee House serves as an in-depth exploration of this phenomenon. Coffee House was owned and operated by the British Coffee Board until its workers occupied it after independence, renamed it Indian Coffee House, and then a decade later, began to manage production on their own. I am particularly interested in the politico-economic origins of the firm and how these origins affect how it currently operates. I will compare branch locations of Indian Coffee House in New Delhi, Calcutta, Chandigarh and Trivandrum to uncover regional differences. To answer the question of why labor militancy during and after national liberation took the general form of worker-occupied and self-managed workplaces in India, I will draw an asymmetric comparison with labor movements in Jamaica and Egypt around the time of their respective national liberation movements. Through my analysis of the world-historical process of worker-occupied and self-managed workplaces in Asia, Africa and Latin America, I propose a theory of worker self-management as an unevenly successful strategy of global class struggle and a way in which some are striving to rebuild the Third World project.
Research interests: Political Economy; Development; Labor; Historical Sociology; Global South
Education: B.A. Cross-National Sociology and International Development, with Honors (The Johns Hopkins University)