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Bait and Switch: The (Futile) Pursuit of the American Dream (2005)

af Barbara Ehrenreich

MedlemmerAnmeldelserPopularitetGennemsnitlig vurderingOmtaler
1,751559,926 (3.38)36
Barbara Ehrenreich's "Nickel and dimed" explored the lives of low-wage workers. Now, in "Bait and switch", she enters another hidden realm of the economy-the world of the white-collar unemployed. Armed with a plausible resume of a professional "in transition," she attempts to land a "middle class job" undergoing career coaching and personality testing, then begins trawling a series of EST-like "boot camps," job fairs, "networking events," and evangelical job-search "ministries." She is proselytized, scammed, lectured and, again and again, rejected. "Bait and switch" highlights the people who've done everything right-gotten college degrees, developed marketable skills, and built up impressive resumes-yet have become repeatedly vulnerable to financial disaster. Like the now classic "Nickel and dimed", "Bait and switch" is alternately hilarious and tragic, a searing expose of economic cruelty where we least expect it.… (mere)
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» Se også 36 omtaler

Engelsk (54)  Finsk (1)  Alle sprog (55)
Viser 1-5 af 55 (næste | vis alle)
Barbara Ehrenreich does a great job evoking the sweaty desperation of people clinging to their station after circumstances change. That's not to say that she is unsympathetic; her sympathy for struggling people is a hallmark of her writing. Her portrayals of her fellow job-seekers (and herself) are unsparing, but not unkind.

This would be best read after [b:Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America|1869|Nickel and Dimed On (Not) Getting by in America|Barbara Ehrenreich|https://i.gr-assets.com/images/S/compressed.photo.goodreads.com/books/1442378091l/1869._SY75_.jpg|1840613], her book focusing on both the search for and the daily realities of blue and pink collar work. Rather than playing these categories of workers against each other, I think the shared themes of these two books are along the lines of solidarity and identifying the underlying structures of exploitation. They could be fodder for culture war stuff, but Ehrenreich is too smart to slip into that and reports with such closely observed detail that it would be difficult to weaponise any of it. ( )
  NickEdkins | May 27, 2023 |
A seminal book about the shrinking middle class in which laid-off employees struggle to make ends meet through unemployment benefits, multilevel marketing schemes, contract work, and commission-only sales, none of which offers the stability and reliability of a regular paycheck, paid vacations, health and dental benefits, and a retirement plan.

Ehrenreich's one year journey to find an executive level job led her to four states, dozens of networking events, three career coaches, a personal makeover complete with makeup, and $4,000.00 in job-search related expenses but resulted in only two job offers: one from AFLAC as a commission-only sales representative and one from Mary Kay as an independent sales representative. Neither "job" offered the typical employment package she was seeking: salaried work with benefits.

Both disheartening and enlightening, Bait and Switch exemplifies Ehrenreich's ability to balance straight forward reporting with firsthand experience. A must read for anyone trying to understand the success and failings of corporate culture in the post dot-com United States. ( )
  AngelaLam | Feb 8, 2022 |
trials of seeking a white collar job in current economy
  ritaer | Aug 16, 2021 |
Nothing new or radical here for anyone who's ever looked for an office job. But it is, as one of the job seekers Ehrenreich encountered in her search said, nice to know that you're not alone in the frustrations and bullshit experienced during a job search. ( )
  Charon07 | Jul 16, 2021 |
Not as good as Nickeled and Dimed, this is about the grinding misery of the job search instead of, as Ehrenreich intended, the grinding misery of white collar corporate employment. Perhaps my discomfort is telling. The grinding misery of white collar corporate employment could have left me feeling smugly superior, from my position in the white collar academic world. But since I am academic staff, rather than faculty, my distance from job search misery is not sufficiently reassuring - and my awareness that the job market has worsened rather than improved since Ehrenreich wrote this book adds to its weight. ( )
  elenaj | Jul 31, 2020 |
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Barbara Ehrenreich's "Nickel and dimed" explored the lives of low-wage workers. Now, in "Bait and switch", she enters another hidden realm of the economy-the world of the white-collar unemployed. Armed with a plausible resume of a professional "in transition," she attempts to land a "middle class job" undergoing career coaching and personality testing, then begins trawling a series of EST-like "boot camps," job fairs, "networking events," and evangelical job-search "ministries." She is proselytized, scammed, lectured and, again and again, rejected. "Bait and switch" highlights the people who've done everything right-gotten college degrees, developed marketable skills, and built up impressive resumes-yet have become repeatedly vulnerable to financial disaster. Like the now classic "Nickel and dimed", "Bait and switch" is alternately hilarious and tragic, a searing expose of economic cruelty where we least expect it.

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