Des relations professionnelles politisées dans le prisme du militantisme kanak [Employment relations and the Kanak people's labour struggle]

Le Queux, Stéphane, and Graff, Stéphanie (2015) Des relations professionnelles politisées dans le prisme du militantisme kanak [Employment relations and the Kanak people's labour struggle]. Chronique Internationale de l'IRES, 150. pp. 3-16.

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English abstract: New Caledonia has a rich labour history and a strong labour movement which can to a large extent be explained by the prevalence of its mining industry. Further, there is a militant indigenous movement which for historical reasons intersects with and is channelled through organised labour. This takes place in the context of the colonial politics of reconciliation, the political platform for a 'Common Destiny'. This platform encompasses key employment relations and social justice issues such as inequality, the cost of living and social exclusion. Consequently, labour struggles become readily politicised across the racial and social divides of New Caledonia. Despite relative physical proximity between Australia and New Caledonia, there has been little attention to New Caledonia from either Australian industrial relations (IR) or by the broader English speaking IR academics. One of our aims with this article is to address the dearth of information on New Caledonia in English speaking IR research. This current article is informed by two periods of field research, in July 2011 and 2014. The research included interviews with trade union leaders and the main employer association and a content analysis of statistics, official reports and press reviews provided by government agencies such as labour market and current labour issues. In addition to this, our discussion is further informed by ongoing participant observation of Kanak political activism. Rather than providing a detailed overview of the whole IR context in New Caledonia, we pay particular attention to the indigenous people's struggle for sovereignty. The core argument is that Caledonian IR cannot be fully and properly understood without reference to the Kanak (labour) struggle.

French abstract: La Nouvelle-Calédonie est dotée d'une riche tradition syndicale. Il s'agit d'un contexte où les syndicats sont militants et où les relations professionnelles se retrouvent fortement politisées. Cette politisation s'explique notamment par le militantisme kanak et son engagement anticolonial en contre-champ du partenariat social mis en place dans le cadre de la politique du 'destin commun' émanant de l'Accord de Nouméa et aussi plus largement en raison de la permanence de fortes inégalités et des revendications de rééquilibrage économique et social et de lutte contre la vie chère qui leur sont rattachées.

Item ID: 39887
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1285-087X
Keywords: kanak; employment relations; sovereignty; decolonization; Indigenous people; New Caledonia
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Date Deposited: 27 Aug 2015 04:18
FoR Codes: 15 COMMERCE, MANAGEMENT, TOURISM AND SERVICES > 1503 Business and Management > 150306 Industrial Relations @ 100%
SEO Codes: 91 ECONOMIC FRAMEWORK > 9104 Management and Productivity > 910401 Industrial Relations @ 100%
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