Not Working Losing a Job in Today s Great Recession In the summer and early fall of the writer DW Gibson set off on a journey across the United States His purpose to interview Americans who have lost their jobs in the ongoing economic disaster th
In the summer and early fall of 2011, the writer DW Gibson set off on a journey across the United States His purpose to interview Americans who have lost their jobs in the ongoing economic disaster that has destroyed the livelihood of millions The result a book that takes the pulse of the victims of today s financial crisis and delivers a prognosis combining an extraorIn the summer and early fall of 2011, the writer DW Gibson set off on a journey across the United States His purpose to interview Americans who have lost their jobs in the ongoing economic disaster that has destroyed the livelihood of millions The result a book that takes the pulse of the victims of today s financial crisis and delivers a prognosis combining an extraordinary mix of pathos, anger, solidarity and humor.Together with two companions, a filmmaker and a playwright, Gibson travelled from the collapsing new economy white box factories of California to the rusting and derelict industrial plants of the Northeast Along the way, he talked to the recently unemployed of all stripes a college graduate fired from her first job after just a week at work, an HR executive dismissed after herself laying off hundreds of her colleagues, a cleaner fired in a cafeteria during her lunch break, and a real estate executive whose first inkling that something was amiss occurred when he arrived at his office to find it abandoned.Each of these stories is different, and the detail of how people experience the trauma of being let go provides a fascinating core to Not Working But, beyond the specifics, important general themes emerge the range of the recession which, despite the particular vulnerabilities of people of color and the less educated, is impacting communities right across the country the sense of isolation and purposeless that accompanies losing one s job and the widespread feeling that the victims are somehow responsible for their fate and the inventiveness, generosity and good humor of many of those trying to rebuild lives shattered by lost income and self respect.Inspired by the great oral historian Studs Terkel, whose Working dominates the canon of American social history, Not Working is a book of burning importance for America today, a critical intervention in an election year when stubbornly immovable 9% unemployment is certain to be the central issue In these pages we see unemployment not as a statistic but as a real tragedy in the lives of many Americans whose compelling stories demand to be heard.
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