Trade Unions and Noncitizens in South Africa: Towards an Organizational Norm of Differentiated Universalism

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Paziuk, Tyler




The apartheid era was characterized by a concerted program of denationalization that rendered the Black majority both 'right-less' and exploitable while simultaneously institutionalizing racial and ethnic differences. In casting all workers, irrespective of ethnicity or origin, as members of the Black working class, trade unions of the period transcended divisions and, eventually, claimed citizenship for Black South Africans. Today, a set of legitimized legal discriminations, embodied in the Western, statist institution of citizenship, similarly renders noncitizens vulnerable to xenophobia and exploitation, and contributes to the disunity of the southern African working class. Drawing on primary research conducted in Gauteng, South Africa in the southern spring of 2016 and with analytical inspiration from feminist citizenship theory, my thesis questions whether this proudly held "organizational norm of universalism" is capable of mitigating the effects of these legal discriminations and of overcoming the divisions they incite.


Industrial and Labor Relations
Ethnic and Racial Studies
Political Science




Carleton University

Thesis Degree Name: 

Master of Arts: 

Thesis Degree Level: 


Thesis Degree Discipline: 

Political Economy

Parent Collection: 

Theses and Dissertations

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