Document Type



This Article uses a historical perspective as a basis to analyze the current state of labor and employment law in the United States. The Article first chronicles the decline in collective governance and the corresponding rise in the governmental regulation of the individual employment relation during the past 50 years, and attempts to ascertain the socio-economic forces contributing to this evolution. The Article then critiques the current state of workplace legal rules and finds a number of deficiencies in terms of both efficiency and equity. The Article pays particular attention to the impact of globalization and the resulting exacerbation in the imbalance of power between labor and capital. The Article concludes by making four recommendations for systemic law reform with an eye toward the development of new international norms in the areas of job security, collective bargaining, employee participation programs, and the legal status of the contingent workforce.