Labour surplus and local labour markets in the Nova Scotia fish processing industry

Authors

  • GENE BARRETT,

    1. Saint Mary's University
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    • *The research on which this paper is based was funded by a grant (410-83-0978) to the ‘Land and Sea’ Project from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada. The work was also supported by Saint Mary's University. Authors' names are being rotated on papers from our research program to indicate the co-operative nature of our work. The manuscript was received in January, 1986 and accepted in July, 1986. The paper was presented before the thirteenth European Congress for Rural Sociology in Braga, Portugal, April, 1986.

  • RICHARD APOSTLE

    1. Saint Mary's University
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    • *The research on which this paper is based was funded by a grant (410-83-0978) to the ‘Land and Sea’ Project from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada. The work was also supported by Saint Mary's University. Authors' names are being rotated on papers from our research program to indicate the co-operative nature of our work. The manuscript was received in January, 1986 and accepted in July, 1986. The paper was presented before the thirteenth European Congress for Rural Sociology in Braga, Portugal, April, 1986.


Abstract

Nous Ctudions ici la relation capitalhravail dans l'industrie de traitement dPoisson, bas6e sur la taille des entreprises: nous distinguons entre Gtablissements petits, competitifs, et grands, ainsi que les situations de travail la piece. Et nous montrons en quoi cette typologie est utile a la comprChension des chaines de production et des patterns de mise en marche. Deuxikmement, nous examinons les effets des rGgimes de travail

sur le proces de travail lui-mime, sur la division du travail, et sur la nature des activitCs syndicales. Nous soulignons tout particulierement l'influence profonde du sexe sur les programmes de production saisonniers, a forte composante de main d'oeuvre. Troisiemement, nous montrons qu'en Nouvelle Ecosse I'industrie de traitement du Poisson est constituie de trois marches du travail sous-rkgionaux, en interaction complexe avec la taille de I'Ctablissement, la prCsence de syndicats et le sexe; la structure salariale de l'industrie est le produit de ces interactions. Nous suggerons aussi que les differences entre march& du travail sous-rCgionaux contribuent B expliquer la variabilite de la propension isous-contracter et engager des travailleurs/euses a la piece.

operations found among small, competitive, and large establishments, as well as in piecework situations. We then show how this typology informs our understanding of production lines and marketing patterns. Second, we discuss the effects of labour systems on the work process itself, the division of labour, and the nature of union activity. In particular, we emphasize the pervasive influence of gender differences on labour intensive, seasonal production schedules. Third, we describe the Nova Scotian fish processing industry as having three distinct sub-regional labour markets which interact in complex ways with plant type, union presence, and gender to account for wage structures. We also indicate that contrasts among sub-regional labour markets can be important in explaining how plants contract work out to feeder plants or to pieceworkers.uPoisson en Nouvelle-Ecosse. Nous Ctablissons d'abord une typologie des usines de traitement du

This paper examines the interrelationship between capital and labour in the Nova Scotia fish processing industry. We first develop a fish plant typology based on the scale of

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