Barbara Ehrenreich goes undercover as a struggling and minumum wage payed American Waitress. Barbara Ehrenreich is the author of “Nickel-And-Dimed” an essay about an average minimum wage worker and how they live their lives on a low wage job. She disguises herself and tries to prove that it is impossible or possible to be financially stable. Barbara meets other minimum wage workers, uses mathematical statics and personal experience to prove that it is very difficult or even impossible to live off a minimum wage paid job and using all of these facts make this article effective and strong.
Barbara takes a break from her cushion life as a well paid journalist and decides to see what it is like to live on minimum wage. She tries to prove that it is not possible to live on the average minimum wage. She finds a job in Key West, Florida as a waitress and rents a trailer nearby. She states that she is only staying at each job for a month. She works full time and will live only off the income from her low wage job. She then realizes one income will not support her and takes on a second job as a hotel maid. Both jobs continue to become more difficult and stressful so Barbara leaves both jobs before the month ends.
The whole point of the experiment is to prove that life is very difficult only living off of minimum wage. Barbara’s coworkers are very strong and effective use of examples why life is difficult. Barbara introduces the readers to her new coworkers and states their living conditions. Barbara states,
“The other white cook, Andy, lives on his dry-docked boat, as far as I can tell from his loving descriptions, cant be more than twenty feet long...Tina and her husband are paying $60 a night...
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...rbara succeeds in proving that it is nearly impossible to live off of one minimum wage income. By using personal experience, statistics, and co-workers personal experiences and livelihoods the articles serves to be effective in making the readers see that it is difficult to live through minimum wage. The success in this article can teach other writers that personalizing the article and recording both success and failures in an experiment make the whole article more believable and fun to read. Writers can learn that even though an article is nonfiction it does not have to be boring and only statistics to be believable. It can be personal and provide personal experiences to be believable also. Also nonfiction writing also tells a story and making putting in your own personality to make it fun to read is exactly what Barbara did and it helped make the article successful.
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