The Discourse of Labor

Labor discourse has affected American history profoundly with its incidents, literature, discourses, and orators, contributing perhaps more than any other movement to the rhetorical traditions of American dissent and emancipation. Compared to its influence it is the perhaps least studied emancipation movement in the field of rhetoric and in college and secondary school education in general. This page organizes materials on this site and elsewhere to further rhetorical studies of American Labor activism.


The Rhetorical Eugene Debs
Timeline of Emancipation Discourse from 1865


Debs, Eugene. "The American Movement".
Debs, Eugene. Canton, Ohio Address.
Debs, Eugene. Statement to the Court.
Samuel Gompers, Speech to the AFL.
Manifesto of the Industrial Workers of the World, 27 June 1905.
Most, Johann. The Pittsburgh Declaration, 14 October 1883.
Spies, August. Address to the Court.

Web Resources

American Life Histories: Manuscripts from the Federal Writers' Project, 1936 to 1940. Library of Congress.
IWW Documents Library.
Labor History: Digital Resources, New York University Libraries
Marxists Internet Archive


Labor: Rhetorical Sources

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