The Irish workers of the modern day can look back at the campaigns of the socialist leader, Jim Larkin as the basis for the rights the majority of us take for granted across the developed world.
Larkin himself was largely removed from history by a group of newspaper barons who turned against him following his greatest accomplishment, the 1913 Dublin Lockout which saw more than 100,000 workers strike as part of an initiative created by Larkin through his own Irish Transport and General Workers Union.
Jim Larkin had arrived in Dublin in 1907 after his techniques of striking and agitating for the rights of dock workers in his home city of Liverpool had proven unfavorable to union leaders.
Larkin would quickly form the ITGWU and despite his reputation as a political activist and agitator, he was often willing to work alongside business owners to ensure the employment options of the majority of Irish workers remained available despite strikes and political activities.
A good example of this willingness to compromise is seen in the fact Larkin refused to use violence to intimidate those breaking picket lines as he understood the need for business to continue to keep jobs open for the future. Read more: Jim Larkin | Biography and Jim Larkin | Wikipedia
In 1912, Larkin played a pivotal role in the development of the Irish Labour Party and has been credited with bringing about a political change in the country with workers rights finally recognized.
Larkin would later find himself struggling to find a political voice after an ill-judged move to the U.S. which saw him arrested and deported back to Dublin in 1920; by the time of his return to Ireland after six years in the U.S., Larkin would find himself a political outcast who had been replaced by those he inspired with his strong lead early in the 20th-century.
Eventually, Jim Larkin would make his way back into the fold of the trade union movement and Irish Labour Party before being injured in a fall while repairing a union-owned community hall in 1947.
From the mid-20th-century onwards, Jim Larkin has seen his contribution to socialism and the unions reassessed in a more favorable light by modern scholars.