Edited by Emilios Christodoulidis, Ruth Dukes and Marco Goldoni
Chapter 19: Critical labour law: then and now
In this chapter, the mainstream, critical tradition in labour law is elaborated by way of the identification and discussion of four key elements of that tradition. These are (i) a (partial) rejection of the public/private divide in law; (ii) a commitment to legal pluralism; (iii) legal scepticism; and (iv) the adoption of sociolegal methods. In the second part of the chapter, I explain the threat posed in recent decades to the continued viability of systems of labour law that are broadly protective of workers’ interests, and emancipatory of workers, by myriad pressures associated with globalization and deindustrialization. Again, discussion proceeds by way of consideration of the four key elements of the critical tradition identified in Part I. The main question addressed is how scholars have sought to adapt their approaches and methods so as to continue to make interventions that are critical in nature and concerned, still, with the transformative potential of labour law.
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