ACCUMULATION STRATEGY AND CLASS FORMATION: THE MAKING OF THE INDUSTRIAL LABOR FORCE IN IRAN, 1962-1977 (MIDDLE EAST, SOCIOLOGY OF DEVELOPMENT)
The dissertation is a sociological analysis of the industrial labor force in Iran. Specifically, it looks at the effects of the accumulation strategy of the Pahlavi state during the 1960s and 1970s upon the structure and contradictions of the urban industrial labor force. The study was prompted by an interest in the role of urban industrial workers in the 1978-79 Iranian Revolution. Industrial strikes, the formation of workers' councils, and a short-lived movement for workers' control are the salient features of the self-activity and self-organization of industrial workers between 1978 and 1981. Nonetheless, industrial workers were relatively late to arrive on the political scene and, after the Revolution, were subsumed under the program of the clerical rulers. This raises questions about the nature of Iranian modernization, and about the character of the industrial working class. The land reform, industrialization project, and the Third, Fourth and Fifth national development plans (1962-1977) are examined detail, particularly as they relate to labor markets and the development of the urban industrial labor force in Iran. The study demonstrates that while much progress was made in the development of modern industry, and that urban industrial labor came to have a strategic role in the economy and the society, what had emerged during the period under consideration was a dual labor market and a young and differentiated industrial labor force, with implications for political and ideological practices during the Revolution.