Not only did she learn about the low wages but also the treatment that was shown to the workers. In Florida she almost develops a hate for managment, one being that managers can sit around hours on end and get away with it and secondly because the showed no passion for the job they had. One job wasnt good enough at that time for her, given that she couldn’t pay her rent. She tries working two jobs for one day but gives up because she felt it would be to much of a toll on her. With plentiful job opportunities, Maine was next on her list.
Not everyone can depend on their low wages to make it through life. Ehrenreich states that perfectly through the low wage jobs she took and the lives of other low wage workers. Their story was shared to inspire the people to take action and fight against the poverty low wage workers face everyday. 13. Overall, is the argument sound?
Nickel & Dimed On (Not) Getting by in America The book Nickel and Dimed On (Not) Getting by in America, written by Barbara Ehrenreich is a book that relates the experience of how she survived living on poverty-level wages in America as a waitress, maid and a Wal-mart sales associate. Barbara left her comfortable surroundings as a journalist with a Ph.D in biology to work various "unskilled" and "under compensated" jobs in order to achieve, "the old-fashioned kind of journalism". In regards to leaving her comfortable lifestyles for a few months traveling through Florida to Maine and Minnesota, she discovered that people who are paid six to seven dollars an hour did not generate enough income for those who did not want to live outside of a home. The sad reality is that millions of people in America work everyday for those wages and have to just deal with it. The majority opinion is that some poor people are lazy or choose to be that way, when the truth is that individuals work everyday some even two jobs and still cannot make ends meet because of the poverty cycle.
In working as a waitress in Florida, a maid in Maine, and a sales clerk in Minnesota, Ehrenreich soon discovers that even the "lowliest" of occupations require exhausting and strenuous efforts rewarded by a wage that barely covers living expenses and everyday expenditures. As a native resident to Florida, Ehrenreich doesn't venture far from home to begin research. She quickly realizes the harsh variation from her comfortable middle-class lifestyle and her new predicament. She finds work waiting tables at two restaurants and is becomes a housekeeper working only once a week at a hotel. She experiences the invisibility of many low-wage workers when her face "goes unnoticed" in her native town (11).
First beginning with a recap of her childhood, and a discussion about how her family was borderline impoverished and that only until her father got a job as a miner, did her family escape to middle-class status (pg. 9). She then goes on to impose restrictions on herself to further solidify and to give her the most accurate experience of a working-class laborer. Rule one was that she could not, in her research for jobs, fall back on any skills derived from her education or usual work-not that there were a lot of want ads for essayist anyway. Rule two was that she had to take the highest paying job that was offered, and to do her best in holding on to it.
At the beginning of the article Barbara shows statics, mathematically calculated, that it is indeed impossible to make a living through 1 minimum wage income alone. Barbara starts by saying “Mathematically, the answer is no, as can be shown by taking $6 to $7 an hour, perhaps subtracting a $1 or two an hour for child care, multiplying by 160 hours a month, and comparing the results to the prevailing rents.” She then goes on to show statics by stating, “According to the National Coalition for the Homeless, for example, in 1998 it took, on average nation wide, an hourly wage of $8.89 to afford a one-bedroom apartment, and the Preamble Center for Public Policy estimates that the odd against a typical welfare recipients landing a job at such a “living wage” are 97 to 1” (Hirschberg 539). These facts and statics proves that it would be difficult to live off of a one person, minimum wage, income. It shows that mathematically it would not be possible to support everything in
Ehrenreich lastly states, “guilt doesn’t go anywhere far enough; the appropriate emotion is shame- shame at our dependency, in this case, on the underpaid labor of others” (221). She brings in an appeal to emotions of guilt and shame in her readers. She wants her readers to feel ashamed for treating the working class without respect. No one in society understands that the low-wagers job is what keeps America alive, if it wasn’t for the low wage class, there wouldn’t be restaurants servers, home care services, cashiers, etc. Society takes advantage of the little things life offers and Ehrenreich wants her audience to feel empathy towards their actions and to realize the low-wage workers are not society’s outcasts.
In America, low wage workers are experiencing difficulty maintaining a roof over their heads, putting food in their mouths, and providing for their families (Briana, 2016). Many of these workers are working at least two or three-part time jobs, or working full time at low-wage paying jobs. However, working fulltime or having two or three part-time jobs, still isn’t enough to make ends meet, support themselves, and their families. In the novel, Nickel and Dimed (2015), Barbara Ehrenreich, the author, does a great job going into the the workforce to be employed as a low wage worker, plus acquiring information about how low wage workers make ends meet. Ehrenreich’s reasoning to do so is for research purposes.
Because Carrie is young and inexperienced in the world of men, she is not wise enough to understand where all Drouet's attention is leading toward. Although she senses that the money should be given back, her desire and longing for the good things in life are so powerful that she ignores her beliefs in what is right and wrong. Unable to find another job, Carries is forced to make a decision, returning to Wisconsin or letting Drouet keep her as his mistress. Choosing to remain with Drouet was an extraordinary decision. This went against everything society taught.
She has little money to buy a used car or move out of her dangerous neighborhood due to all the expenses in her home (Jarvie, “What Life Is Like on $7.25 per Hour”). Walker is one of the millions of Americans living at the federal minimum wage. On July 24th, the White House posted on their blog,