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Catalyzing worker co-ops & the solidarity economy

Cooperation vs Authoritarianism in Spain

In this episode, Laura travels to the European nation of Spain to learn how people in two of the regions that were the most brutally repressed under the mid-century dictatorship of Francisco Franco (1936-75) built the world’s largest worker-owned cooperatives and a culture of independence and mutual aid that endures to this day. From the Basque region in the north, to Barcelona on the Mediterranean, Flanders speaks with contemporary co-op worker-owners who explain how the humanist business model served their parents and grandparents and how that model is transforming today under the pressures of globalization and the rise of the digital economy. She asks whether regional independence is still a viable force and if so, for whom? And she considers the growth of the Spanish right wing today and the lesson the Spanish experience might have for Americans.

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