Nickel And Dimed On By Barbara Ehrenreich: Analysis

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While reading this book, Nickel and Dimed On (not) getting by in America by Barbara Ehrenreich, she attempts to go undercover to research the low-wage workforce for a period of time as a way of investigating poverty in the age of welfare reform. “My aim here was much more straightforward and objective-- just to see whether I could match income to expenses, as the truly poor attempt to do every day” (Ehrenreich, 6). Ehrenreich makes it extremely clear to us that her work was not designed to make her experience poverty. She resolves to find out for herself by conducting an experiment and adopting to some rules and limitations, such as no hunger, no homelessness, no relying on skills from her usual work, and she must have her own car to transport …show more content…
Her work ethics in the book made a big difference because she traveled to Florida, Maine, and then Minnesota. Ehrenreich writes that hard work was the secret of success. The reality is that a lot of the low-wage employees Ehrenreich worked with worked impossibly hard, for a little or no reward. Mobility wasn’t a big deal for her because she had a car to start with since the beginning of her journey. But, what about the rest of the people who have to wait for the bus, ride a taxi or even have to walk long distance to get back & forth. We live in a country we stereotype many different groups. Sometimes we could be right, some lazy people should go out and find a job and go through the application process. We all want to live the American dream, but how if the cost of the living is way too expensive for the work that is given to you? Such as waitressing, housekeeping or working as a sales associate at Wal-mart. Ehrenreich gives us great detailed examples of how life was working those five or six dollars an hour jobs. Coming home late at night and waking up super early, working two jobs and still not being able to afford a nice stable …show more content…
“ People who work full-time should be able to earn enough to keep their families out of poverty” (Ehrenreich, 220). Poverty is not just a side-effect of unemployment; rather those fully employed can slip into the deepest poverty as well, with wages too low to cover rising rents. Wal-mart treated its employees like babies in compares to The Maids were Ehrenreich also worked. This more complicated truth, she points out that many of the nation’s poorest citizens remain poor no matter how hard they work, no matter how many jobs they hold. The result in poverty is desperation and emergency. And all this happens; no one in the middle or upper classes seems to even care. Today, we as a nation notice the poverty once again but mainly because of the economic meltdown. This book was also a huge reminder for those who aren’t low wage workers and also recognition for those who work these low-wage

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