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State restructuring and trade union realignment: The pensions struggle in France

Gordon, Alex; Mathers, Andrew


Alex Gordon

Andrew Mathers
Senior Lecturer in Sociology & Criminology


May 2003 saw millions of French workers take to the streets over the issue of pensions, in mobilisations that the financial press presented as a peculiarly French summer ritual (Graham, 2003). Yet a look behind the news shows that the fight over pensions marks an important phase in a fierce and protracted class struggle over the restructuring of the welfare state’a struggle occurring across Europe. Pension reform precipitated a general strike in Greece in 2001, and in 2003 it provoked the first national strike in Austria since 1950. Even staff at the European Commission staged a walkout in May 2003, to protest against cuts in pension entitlement. © 2004, SAGE Publications. All rights reserved.


Gordon, A., & Mathers, A. (2004). State restructuring and trade union realignment: The pensions struggle in France. Capital and Class, 28(2), 9-18.

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date Jan 1, 2004
Journal Capital & Class
Print ISSN 0309-8168
Publisher SAGE Publications
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 28
Issue 2
Pages 9-18
Keywords trade union realignment, pensions, France, state restructuring
Public URL
Publisher URL
Additional Information Additional Information : Mathers was the lead author for this article. The ordering of the names was done on an alphabetic basis.