Labour Unions in Science Fiction

Our guest this week is Olav Rokne of the Hugo Book Club to talk about unions and organized labour, or rather the lack of it, in science fiction. While representation of unions in science fiction is pretty unusual, it’s moved from anti-union hostility to more of a benign neglect.

See our show notes for more information.

Labour Unions in Science Fiction – Show Notes

The show notes for our episode Labour Unions in Science Fiction.

Errata

Imagining the future of organized labour (part one of three) – Hugo Book Club – The essays that inspired us to invite Olav onto the show.

The Future of Work – Our past episode on Wired’s series The Future of Work.

A people’s future of the United States – Edited by Victor LaValle and John Joseph Adams – A great collection of short stories that neglected to include stories about unions; this is a mark against it but not enough to not read it.

Autonomous – Annalee Newitz – A novel that is is about the subversion of labour rights. Explicit labour unions are not mentioned in the book. For more labour representation Look for Annalee Newitz’ new novel The Future of Another Timeline coming out in September 2019.

All Systems Red – Martha Wells – The first in the Murderbot Diaries. Doesn’t mention unions specifically but features a lot of work and unsafe working conditions. These workers could use a union.

Stories mentioned for labour unions in science fiction

Orbital Decay – Allen Steele

For the Win – Cory Doctorow

Company Town – Madeline Ashby

Hunger Makes the Wolf – Alex Wells

Another Girl, Another Planet – Lou Antonelli