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Tosstorff, Reiner (2005)
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Languages: English
Types: Article
Subjects: D204
Accounts of the founding of the International Labour Organization (ILO) usually emphasize the role of social-reformist intellectuals and politicians. Despite the indisputable role of these actors, however, the international labour movement was the actual initiator of this process. Over the course of World War I, the international labour movement proposed a comprehensive programme of protection for the working classes, which, conceived as compensation for its support of the war, was supposed to become an international agreement after the war. In 1919, politicians took up this programme in order to give social stability to the postwar order. However, the way in which the programme was instituted disappointed the high expectations of trade unions regarding the fulfilment of their demands. Instead, politicians offered them an institution that could be used, at best, to realize trade-union demands. Despite open disappointment and sharp critique, however, the revived International Federation of Trade Unions (IFTU) very quickly adapted itself to this mechanism. The IFTU now increasingly oriented its international activities around the lobby work of the ILO.
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    • 16. The letter is in Internationaler Gewerkschaftsbund. Bericht fu¨ r die Jahre 1913 bis 1919 (Berlin, 1919), pp. 45f. [hereafter IGB-Bericht 1913-1919].
    • 17. ''Bewusste Irref u¨hrung'', Correspondenzblatt der Generalkommission der Gewerkschaften Deutschlands, no. 46, 11/17/1917 [hereafter Correspondenzblatt]. This article is a polemic by the General Commission of the German trade unions against a leading USPD trade unionist who had accused the commission of trying to keep the Leeds programme secret.
    • 18. Correspondenzblatt, no. 49, 2 December 1916. Detailed proceedings of the conference have not survived.
    • 19. The letter is in IGB-Bericht 1913-1919, pp. 46f.
    • 20. Reprinted in Sch o¨nhoven, Die Gewerkschaften 1914-1919, pp. 305-312.
    • 21. Gompers, the American trade-union chairman at the time, has this to say about Legien in his memoirs: ''He was German from the tip of his toes to the last hair of his head and assumed a general attitude of German superiority''; Samuel Gompers, Seventy Years of Life and Labor: An Autobiography, 2 vols (New York, 1943), vol. 2, p. 39 [hereafter Seventy Years].
    • 22. For the endemic conflict between the German and French trade unions within the IFTU prior to World War I, see: Susan Milner, The Dilemmas of Internationalism: French Syndicalism and the International Labour Movement 1900-1914 (Oxford, 1990).
    • 23. This is the reason given in the article, ''Bewusste Irref u¨hrung'', Correspondenzblatt, no. 46, 17 November 1917.
    • 24. Correspondenzblatt, no. 21, 26 May 1917.
    • 33. Protokoll der Internationalen Gewerkschafts-Konferenz vom 1. bis 4. Oktober 1917 im Volkshaus in Bern (Berne, 1917) [hereafter Protokoll IGB-Konferenz Bern 1917].
    • 37. Carol Riegelmann, ''War-Time Trade Union and Socialist Proposals'', in Shotwell, Origins, where the corresponding resolutions are found in vol. 1, pp. 55-79, 68-70, and vol. 2, pp. 52-69, 75-80. See also Horne, Labour at War, pp. 329-331.
    • 38. The letter and Asquith's brief confirmation of receipt are in General Federation of Trade Unions: Eighteenth Annual Report and Balance Sheet (London, 1917), pp. 23f.
    • 39. This letter is in Sch o¨nhoven, Die Gewerkschaften 1914-1919, pp. 382-391.
    • 40. Ursula Ratz, Zwischen Arbeitsgemeinschaft und Koalition. B u¨rgerliche Sozialreformer und 46. Hans-Joachim Bieber, Gewerkschaften in Krieg und Revolution. Arbeiterbewegung, Industrie, Staat und Milita¨r in Deutschland 1914-1920, 2 vols (Hamburg, 1981), vol. 1, p. 494. Pp. 492-498 provide a general description of the ambiguous position the German tradeunion leadership held on Brest-Litovsk. This position differs starkly from the vehement protests that this leadership under Legien later made against the Versailles treaty.
    • 47. ''Die Gewerkschaften beim Reichskanzler'', and ''Die Sozialpolitik und die Friedensvertra¨ge'', Correspondenzblatt, no. 38, 21 September 1918.
    • 48. See Rechenschaftsbericht der Generalkommission der Gewerkschaften Deutschlands vom 1. Juni 1914 bis 31. Mai 1919 (Berlin, 1919), p. 193.
    • 49. Verhandlungen des Reichtags, vol. 314, p. 6152.
    • 50. Ratz, Zwischen Arbeitsgemeinschaft und Koalition, pp. 397-399.
    • 61. Reprinted in Ritter, Die II. Internationale 1918/1919, vol. 2, p. 770.
    • 62. IGB-Bericht 1913-1919, pp. 62-64; Bericht der Zweigstelle Amsterdam, pp. 12-14.
    • 63. Protokoll der Internationalen Gewerkschaftskonferenz vom 5. bis 9. Februar 1919 im Volkshaus in Bern (Berne, 1919).
    • 64. General Federation of Trade Unions: Twentieth Annual Report and Balance Sheet (London, 1919), p. 7. TUC representatives who had come for the political conference, however, also took part in the trade-union conference at times. This was the first indication that, in the following months, the ''mother organization'' (the TUC) would drive the GFTU out of the international trade-union movement.
    • 65. The proceedings of the political conference are contained in Ritter, Die II. Internationale 1918/1919, vol. 1, pp. 179-570.
    • 68. The debate is documented in Ritter, Die II. Internationale 1918/1919, vol. 1, pp. 434-460.
    • 71. As stated by Gompers in 1921. Cited by Wilson in Labor in the League System, p. 46. See also Gompers, Seventy Years, vol. 2, pp. 491f.
    • 72. Shotwell, Origins, vol. 2, p. 301.
    • 92. This criticism was made by the Italian workers' delegate in Washington, who, together with the Swiss and Polish workers' delegates, published a statement critical of the IFTU majority. It is printed in L. d'Aragona & G. Baldesi, Rapporti internazionali (Milan, 1921), pp. 6, 31. See also, ''Rapport de Gino Baldesi de´le´gue´ de la C.G.T. italienne'', in La vie ouvrie`re, nos 30-32, from 30 January to 13 February 1920.
    • 93. Bericht u¨ber den Außerordentlichen Internationalen Gewerkschaftskongreß. Abgehalten im Holborn-Restaurant, London, 22. bis 27. November 1920 (Amsterdam, 1921).
    • 94. Bericht u¨ber den Außerordentlichen Internationalen Gewerkschaftskongreß. Abgehalten in Rom vom 20.-26. April 1922 im Teatro Argentino (Amsterdam, 1923), p. 63.
    • 95. This was the result of the founding of a communist trade-union international. See Reiner Tosstorff, Profintern: Die rote Gewerkschaftsinternationale 1921-1937 (Paderborn, 2004).
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