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Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting By in America

de Barbara Ehrenreich

Altres autors: Mira la secció altres autors.

MembresRessenyesPopularitatValoració mitjanaMencions
10,815211628 (3.74)231
Business. Sociology. Nonfiction. HTML:

The New York Times bestselling work of undercover reportage from our sharpest and most original social critic, with a new foreword by Matthew Desmond, author of Evicted

Millions of Americans work full time, year round, for poverty-level wages. In 1998, Barbara Ehrenreich decided to join them. She was inspired in part by the rhetoric surrounding welfare reform, which promised that a job??any job??can be the ticket to a better life. But how does anyone survive, let alone prosper, on $6 an hour?
To find out, Ehrenreich left her home, took the cheapest lodgings she could find, and accepted whatever jobs she was offered. Moving from Florida to Maine to Minnesota, she worked as a waitress, a hotel maid, a cleaning woman, a nursing-home aide, and a Wal-Mart sales clerk. She lived in trailer parks and crumbling residential motels. Very quickly, she discovered that no job is truly "unskilled," that even the lowliest occupations require exhausting mental and muscular effort. She also learned that one job is not enough; you need at least two if you int to live indoors.
Nickel and Dimed reveals low-rent America in all its tenacity, anxiety, and surprising generosity??a land of Big Boxes, fast food, and a thousand desperate stratagems for survival. Read it for the smoldering clarity of Ehrenreich's perspective and for a rare view of how "prosperity" looks from the bottom. And now, in a new foreword, Matthew Desmond, author of Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City, explains why, twenty years on in America, Nickel and Dimed is more relevant than e
… (més)

  1. 50
    Hand to Mouth: Living in Bootstrap America de Linda Tirado (4leschats)
    4leschats: Both deal with the cyclical nature of poverty and its ability to trap people.
  2. 30
    Sense ni cinc a París i Londres de George Orwell (WoodsieGirl)
    WoodsieGirl: To see how little things change...
  3. 30
    The Moral Underground: How Ordinary Americans Subvert an Unfair Economy de Lisa Dodson (zhejw)
    zhejw: In the 1990s, Barbara Ehrenreich goes "undercover" to discover how low wage workers (don't) get by. In the next decade, Lisa Dodson tells the stories of some such workers and their children, but focuses her time on those who supervise and serve them, subverting the system to help.… (més)
  4. 20
    On the Clock: What Low-Wage Work Did to Me and How It Drives America Insane de Emily Guendelsberger (LAKobow)
  5. 10
    Scratch Beginnings: Me, $25, and the Search for the American Dream de Adam W. Shepard (amyblue)
  6. 10
    Working in the Shadows: A Year of Doing the Jobs (Most) Americans Won't Do de Gabriel Thompson (Euryale)
    Euryale: Thompson's work focuses more on the nature of low wage work and the ways immigrants are segregated in certain industries or departments, rather than on housing conditions or whether the wages are sufficient for survival.
  7. 10
    Heartland: A Memoir of Working Hard and Being Broke in the Richest Country on Earth de Sarah Smarsh (aspirit)
  8. 00
    Mcquaig Linda : Canada'S Social Welfare de Linda McQuaig (bhowell)
  9. 11
    Dishwasher: One Man's Quest to Wash Dishes in All Fifty States de Pete Jordan (Othemts)
    Othemts: A pair of books that show the conditions for the worker in America's least desirable jobs.
  10. 00
    Selling Ben Cheever: Back to Square One in a Service Economy de Benjamin Cheever (nessreader)
    nessreader: Both about middle class writers adrift in the service economy and being miserable there.
  11. 00
    Hired: Six Months Undercover in Low-Wage Britain de James Bloodworth (nessreader)
  12. 03
    Under the Overpass: A Journey of Faith on the Streets of America de Mike Yankoski (infiniteletters)
  13. 03
    Rich Dad, Poor Dad: What the Rich Teach Their Kids About Money That the Poor and Middle Class Do Not! de Robert T. Kiyosaki (readysetgo)
    readysetgo: An opposing view to the fatalistic tone of this book.
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» Mira també 231 mencions

Anglès (208)  Italià (2)  Totes les llengües (210)
Es mostren 1-5 de 210 (següent | mostra-les totes)
Fascinating account of what those who are in manual labor positions experience. Barbara Ehrenreich goes undercover to report on what these workers endure.
She gets hired as a maid, a cleaner, a waitress, and an employee at Walmart. She exposes the inequality and treatment, the pay discrepancies, the terrible living conditions, the stringent guidelines (long hours, very short lunch breaks, low pay). I was appalled at the Merry Maids cleaning policies, and saddened by the treatment these workers endure.
A must read! ( )
  rmarcin | Jan 24, 2024 |
Momentous...

I actually was curious to try it myself. And then i spot this one.

A must read.
  Den85 | Jan 3, 2024 |
4.5 stars

Overall, I really liked this book and think that it could enlighten many middle- and upper-class individuals. Many people think that those in poverty simply need to "get a job" and while that may be true on the surface some of the time, the issues of poverty go much deeper. Ehrenreich explores what it's like for those living on minimum wage - people who are not too lazy or too good to work, yet who still are barely surviving.

"I grew up hearing over and over, to the point of tedium, that 'hard work' was the secret of success: 'Work hard and you'll get ahead' or 'It's hard work that got us where we are.' No one ever said that you could work hard - harder even than you ever thought possible - and still find yourself sinking ever deeper into poverty and debt." (p. 220)

"When someone works for less pay than she can live on - when for example, she goes hungry so that you can eat more cheaply and conveniently - then she has made a great sacrifice for you, she has made you a gift of some part of her abilities, her health, and her life. The 'working poor,' as they are approvingly termed, are in fact the major philanthropists of our society. They neglect their own children so that the children of others will be cared for; they live in substandard housing so that other homes will be shiny and perfect.... To be a member of the working poor is to be an anonymous donor, a nameless benefactor, to everyone else." (p. 221)

Granted, the book has its problems:

Ehrenreich isn't actually poor - she's an upper-class PhD, in fact, and so to write this book, she goes "undercover" working as a waitress, maid, Walmart sales clerk, etc. She makes a lot of decisions that many true poor people wouldn't make (particularly when it comes to spending her money), but of course, somewhere there probably is a poor person as dumb as she is when it comes to not understanding that Goodwill is going to be the best place for a cheap belt required for your work uniform.

She is an atheist, and makes some rather negative comments about Christians, lumping all Christians into one category of hypocrites.

She's very pro-marijuana and spends a bit too much time lamenting drug tests in the workplace.

There's also a fair amount of language in the book. Language when quoting someone else I can understand, but I don't think profanity is the best way to prove you're a professional.

But overall, this is one of those books where you take the good and roll your eyes at the bad while you move on. I would definitely recommend it! ( )
  RachelRachelRachel | Nov 21, 2023 |
For a book focused on nickel and dimes, there is very little budgetary information. I was hoping for some number by number breakdown but it was surface level and shallow. Instead focuses mainly on the author's judgments of the working class. I do enjoy reading about the human experience but it ended up sounding like a bunch of privileged rants from someone with little perspective. Also, this book is noticeably outdated with how remarkably better the economy was back in the 90s compared to today despite the author's attempt to make it sound terrible. ( )
  Anamie | Oct 1, 2023 |
A tremendous book that uncovers the day-to-day challenges faced by those who earn a barely livable wage. These are people who don't qualify
for a lot of aid programs or government assistance or subsidies. At the same time, the business (that is the large/chain companies) keep gaining
revenue at the expense of these workers.

I have a fear that my children, regardless of their level of expertise and skill, will be at this level, at least for a considerable amount of time, due to
the on-going (slow-progressing) economic "recovery. The papers and media pundits may all tout economic recovery, but it seems that, more
and more that recovery, those earnings are not being brought down to to larger core population of employees.

A must read, and (unfortunately relevant) book. ( )
  schoenbc70 | Sep 2, 2023 |
Es mostren 1-5 de 210 (següent | mostra-les totes)
We have Barbara Ehrenreich to thank for bringing us the news of America's working poor so clearly and directly, and conveying with it a deep moral outrage and a finely textured sense of lives as lived.
 

» Afegeix-hi altres autors (7 possibles)

Nom de l'autorCàrrecTipus d'autorObra?Estat
Barbara Ehrenreichautor primaritotes les edicionscalculat
Guglielmina, PierreTraductorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Gustafsson, KerstinTraductorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Piven, Frances Foxautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Tamminen, LeenaTraductorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
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Mostly out of laziness, I decide to start my low-wage life in the town nearest to where I actually live, Key West, Florida, which, with a population of about 25,000 is elbowing its way up to the status of a genuine city.
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Business. Sociology. Nonfiction. HTML:

The New York Times bestselling work of undercover reportage from our sharpest and most original social critic, with a new foreword by Matthew Desmond, author of Evicted

Millions of Americans work full time, year round, for poverty-level wages. In 1998, Barbara Ehrenreich decided to join them. She was inspired in part by the rhetoric surrounding welfare reform, which promised that a job??any job??can be the ticket to a better life. But how does anyone survive, let alone prosper, on $6 an hour?
To find out, Ehrenreich left her home, took the cheapest lodgings she could find, and accepted whatever jobs she was offered. Moving from Florida to Maine to Minnesota, she worked as a waitress, a hotel maid, a cleaning woman, a nursing-home aide, and a Wal-Mart sales clerk. She lived in trailer parks and crumbling residential motels. Very quickly, she discovered that no job is truly "unskilled," that even the lowliest occupations require exhausting mental and muscular effort. She also learned that one job is not enough; you need at least two if you int to live indoors.
Nickel and Dimed reveals low-rent America in all its tenacity, anxiety, and surprising generosity??a land of Big Boxes, fast food, and a thousand desperate stratagems for survival. Read it for the smoldering clarity of Ehrenreich's perspective and for a rare view of how "prosperity" looks from the bottom. And now, in a new foreword, Matthew Desmond, author of Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City, explains why, twenty years on in America, Nickel and Dimed is more relevant than e

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