Reflection Of Nickel And Dimed

1043 Words 5 Pages
Barbara Ehrenreich wrote the book Nickel and Dimed, which was about her experience as being a low wage worker in the United States. The authors’ argument in the book, was that minimum wage workers are being treated unfairly by the higher class society in the United States. The purpose of her going through the experiment was to examine the way low wage workers able to live with the salary they are given, “How does anyone live on the wages available to the unskilled?”(1). Ehrenreich wanted to see first hand what the experience would be like, to be apart of the lower class. The style that she used throughout the book was in first person, which made it more of a personal narrative, than an unbiased opinion about low wage workers experience. In …show more content…
When she decided to take on the challenge of becoming a low wage worker, she thought that any job would be simple because she had a Ph.D. , she never thought that the jobs would have been as difficult as they were. One of her strengths was being committed to the jobs that she had, keep in mind she was only being paid seven dollars an hour and below. Ehrenreich wasn’t trying to play a role when she was doing the experiment, she was finding a way to live with the money she had, in a way she was similar to her co-workers. For example, when she worked as being a maid she didn’t leave anything out to do on the job even though it may have been repulsing to do she wanted to get the full experience of being a low wage worker. She was able accomplish this by using the same amount of appliances as the other workers and worked on her hands and knees as well,” so i have to go down on my hands and knees practically at her feet”(83). Previousto this experiment, she never had to do manual labor as a job, so while working as a maid it was a whole new experience for her that was degrading , but she wanted to participate in this job, to see how people that hire her treated the working class. While working as a maid it was able to strengthen her argument by being able to see exactly how low wage workers were treated by the high society. The experience of being a maid was able to strengthen her …show more content…
Involving the way that she tried to succeed in doing the experiment, there was some questionable aspects that didn’t help her argument. For example, she never looked for a high paying job, she always stuck to the bottom jobs in any company she went to. To illustrate this point, in the beginning of her experiment she said, “I broke another rule by failing to take the best-paying job that was offered, and you will have to judge my reasons for doing so yourself”(4). This is a weakness involving her argument, because she manipulated her experiment, to make the outcome of each job sufficient for her argument. This makes her argument less credible, because if she never tried to improve in jobs, of course she wouldn’t get a raise or a pat on the back. Her purpose was to see if she could succeed as being a low wage worker, if anyone that was actually going through this in their real lives they would do anything to go beyond what they know so they could potentially get more money but she always just stayed on the surface of her experiment. If she would have taken account to her rules, she would have possibly made her argument more strong by making the experiment more authentic, but she didn't choose to do so. Another weakness that demonstrates how her argument has insufficient evidence, is how she moved around from job to job. It was unrealistic for her to move from 6 different jobs nevertheless 3 different

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