Friday, January 12, 2007

Evaluation Questions


1) In her Evaluation, Ehrenreich details an argument about a group she refers to as the "disappearing poor." This argument is a complex one involving several kinds of reasons.

1. Read this series of paragraphs (p. 216–221) carefully to absorb her conclusions;

2. then be able to discuss those reasons why the "poor" are less visible among us than their numbers or the near-desperation of their situation would warrant.

3. What supporting anecdotal evidence can you cite from elsewhere in the book?

4. What larger social outcomes do you think might result? — note particularly her assertion that these "working poor" are the major philanthropists of our society.

5. And why doesn't this group function as a powerful force dictating the behavior of the free market?

2) If Ehrenreich wrote a book about high-wage or rich people, could she use the same tactics?

3) Each of the author's jobs can be classified as a "service industry" position, yet in each Ehrenreich comes to see the customers as impediments to doing her job well:

What do these observations tell us about the relationship between worker and customer, or the relationships among worker, customer, and management?

4) What does it mean to be an ethical employee or an ethical employer?

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