Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America Questions and Answers

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

The subtitle of Nickel and Dimed is On (Not) Getting By in America. It is important to note how Ehrenreich chose to put "not" in parentheses, and that choice on her part is directly related to her...

Latest answer posted August 12, 2010 9:16 am UTC

2 educator answers

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

Ehrenreich's purpose is to show how tough it is to make a living as a waitress or food server. She emphasizes that the work is hard and actually takes a high degree of skill and competence. A...

Latest answer posted November 10, 2017 12:43 pm UTC

2 educator answers

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

Ehrenreich's audience, the people she hopes will read the book, are individuals who have never been in the kind of position or situation she is living and describing. She is attempting to convey...

Latest answer posted March 2, 2012 1:31 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

She worked as a Walmart sales clerk, a hotel maid, waitress, nursing home aide, and a cleaning woman to name a few.

Latest answer posted September 24, 2007 6:50 am UTC

1 educator answer

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

I actually have a different opinion than the educator above. Although I do agree that Ehrenreich provides an amazing first-hand research experience of her plight as an underpaid worker, I don't...

Latest answer posted August 24, 2015 4:41 pm UTC

2 educator answers

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

Throughout Nickel and Dimed, Barbara Ehrenreich explores the dynamics of trying to maintain two contrasting positions. While in some ways, her book is a work of investigative journalism for which...

Latest answer posted June 25, 2019 2:55 am UTC

2 educator answers

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

In Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America Barbara Ehrenreich goes undercover to see how people living at minimum wage live. As she begins the project she sets three rules for herself....

Latest answer posted December 13, 2015 4:12 am UTC

1 educator answer

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

Because it is a journalistic account of her experiences, Barbara Ehrenreich does not use many metaphors in Nickel and Dimed. The book's literary style is personal and intimate, rather than dry and...

Latest answer posted February 12, 2012 4:36 am UTC

1 educator answer

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

On page 28, Ehrenreich discusses her failure to make as much money in tips as she had during the tourist seasons. On page 35, Ehrenreich reports how her supervisor at a restaurant gave her friendly...

Latest answer posted October 23, 2011 8:44 am UTC

4 educator answers

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

As the other answer explains, race and, especially, gender determines the kind of minimum wage work Ehrenreich does. Her jobs as a waitress and a house cleaner are particularly tied to gendered...

Latest answer posted January 10, 2020 1:47 pm UTC

3 educator answers

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

Ehrenreich uses a detached journalistic tone in this investigative work. In it, she documents her experiences in a variety of low-wage jobs. She depicts in detail how she tries to survive...

Latest answer posted August 15, 2016 12:22 am UTC

3 educator answers

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

In Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting By in America, Barbara Ehrenreich examines the impact of the 1996 welfare reform act on the class in America. The investigative report uncovers the...

Latest answer posted January 6, 2020 7:29 pm UTC

3 educator answers

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

In the book,Nickel and Dimed by Barbara Ehrenreich where she tries to live on a minimum wage job, I would classify the tone as caustic if you define caustic as a biting or a stinging tone. When...

Latest answer posted February 7, 2012 12:51 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

In Ehrenreich's "Serving in Florida" chapter, the author's humor is ironic, as the restaurant, far from being a clean haven, is disgustingly dirty. She writes, using an extended metaphor, "The...

Latest answer posted April 16, 2017 2:15 pm UTC

2 educator answers

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

In one lengthy description of cleaning a particular home, Barbara Ehrenreich explores the combined ideologies of hygiene and servitude that she sees at the core of the hands-and-knees approach....

Latest answer posted September 28, 2018 12:45 am UTC

3 educator answers

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

I think we have a culture of work in this country and a Puritan work ethic to go with it that puts stresses and strains on the family unit. Americans work long hours, and in most cases both...

Latest answer posted May 24, 2010 2:59 pm UTC

4 educator answers

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

In addition to the examples of the problems experienced by Holly and Lucy, Nickel and Dimed illustrates vividly the importance of access to healthcare when Barbara herself has a medical issue....

Latest answer posted September 9, 2018 6:35 pm UTC

2 educator answers

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

Ehrenreich's purpose in writing Nickel and Dimed was to convey her experiences as an educated, solidly middle-class woman attempting to survive on an equal basis with those who did not have the...

Latest answer posted March 19, 2012 10:14 am UTC

1 educator answer

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

In the chapter on serving, Ehrenreich discusses her experiences as a waitress at two Key West restaurants, the Hearthside and Jerry’s, and as a housekeeper at the motel attached to Jerry’s. During...

Latest answer posted September 14, 2018 6:44 pm UTC

2 educator answers

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

On page 28, Ehrenreich discusses her difficulties in making enough money to meet all her expenses, including her rent. On page 41, Ehrenreich discusses her "slide into poverty" as a result of...

Latest answer posted October 23, 2011 8:36 am UTC

4 educator answers

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

In her introduction to Nickle and Dimed, Barbara Ehrenreich describes a conversation she had over an expensive lunch of "salmon and fried greens" with Lewis Lapham. Lapham, the editor of Harper's,...

Latest answer posted February 2, 2016 1:23 am UTC

1 educator answer

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

Barbara Ehrenreich's Nickel and Dimed is a 2001 book on the state of the working poor in America, and their ability to "(not) get by." Ehrenreich pretended to be a poor person to see if she could...

Latest answer posted March 1, 2012 3:53 am UTC

1 educator answer

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

The character Barbara is fairly interesting to analyze. The previous posts were quite thorough. I would only add that part of what makes the work so interesting in that one can see how there is...

Latest answer posted August 25, 2010 9:37 am UTC

5 educator answers

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

Because Barbara Ehrenreich approached Nickel and Dimed as a social experiment instead of a scientific one, her methodology allowed more conjecture and assumption. For example, she couldn't easily...

Latest answer posted March 19, 2012 7:29 am UTC

1 educator answer

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

Barbara Ehrenreich's college training was in the area of science, specifically lab research that led to a PhD in cell biology. Through this training, she learned to be inquisitive and discovered...

Latest answer posted July 26, 2011 9:03 am UTC

1 educator answer

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

Many of the traits that make Barbara Ehrenrich an effective writer are on display in the following excerpt from the “Serving in Florida” chapter of her book Nickle and Dimed: On my first Friday at...

Latest answer posted March 2, 2012 2:21 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

To her disappointment, the author discovers that want ads are not a reliable measure of the actual jobs available at any particular time. This is because the want ads are an "insurance policy" for...

Latest answer posted June 21, 2018 9:36 pm UTC

3 educator answers

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

Nickel and Dimed is Barbara Ehrenreich's 1996 experiment of pretending to be a poor person and trying to subsist on entry-level jobs. While her study was not scientific and contained several...

Latest answer posted February 7, 2012 2:16 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

Barbara's jobs in Maine are her first venture out of her home state of Florida. Besides her work as a "dietitian" at a nursing home, Barbara's main source of income in Maine is her work for a...

Latest answer posted February 10, 2010 8:18 am UTC

1 educator answer

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

This quote is actually by essayist H.L. Mencken. In the context of Nickel and Dimed, it means the majority of Americans are working hard just to put food on the table and find a safe place to live....

Latest answer posted September 1, 2016 7:10 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

Of the choices you have been given, the best possible option would be letter B. The "ha ha" is the manager providing his own reaction of laughter in response to what he considers his humorous...

Latest answer posted January 11, 2013 4:13 am UTC

1 educator answer

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

The men and women who were Barbara Ehrenreich's co-workers reflected many of the economic trends and realities in the United States in the latter half of the twentieth century and the beginning of...

Latest answer posted April 19, 2012 4:19 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

Barbara Ehrenreich uses the term "wage slave" to describe the situation in which many of her coworkers in the book find themselves. They are employed and are being paid, so they can be called wage...

Latest answer posted August 23, 2011 8:53 am UTC

1 educator answer

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

Ehrenreich took her third minimum-wage job in Minnesota because of the State's claims of a robust economy in the job and housing sectors. In this instance, she started out housing sitting for...

Latest answer posted January 24, 2010 4:23 am UTC

1 educator answer

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

In Chapter 1, Ehrenreich decides to get her first job and residence near her home; so she ventures out into Key West, Florida. She realizes that this is a tourist area; so her housing will be...

Latest answer posted January 25, 2010 1:10 am UTC

1 educator answer

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

I will divide my answer into three parts. Connections between: 1) Maids and minorities Ehrenreich admits that most of the women she worked with in maid-service were white, and that fact seems to...

Latest answer posted August 4, 2015 6:48 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

Barbara Ehrenreich combined direct personal experience (placing herself in the working and living situations she was studying) with academic research (reviewing the statistical studies regarding...

Latest answer posted July 19, 2011 10:06 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

In my opinion, Barbara's experiment in the book Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting By in America, was a valid experiment. Yes, she did have outs that other people in the book did not have, but she...

Latest answer posted August 19, 2012 1:39 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

When Ehrenreich moves to Maine for part of her experiment in Nickel and Dimed, she notes the manner in which employment is advertised. As she looks through job postings, she points out that some...

Latest answer posted November 8, 2013 4:36 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

During Barbara Ehrenreich's first week of work at a house maid service in Maine, she drops a fish bowl spilling water everywhere. Then she is told that as a matter of company policy her pay check...

Latest answer posted February 12, 2010 10:35 am UTC

1 educator answer

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

In the book Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting By in America by Barbara Ehrenreich, the author makes the case that all of American society pays a price for the plight of the working poor. As an...

Latest answer posted October 7, 2012 10:38 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

It's all a sad consequence of "supply and demand." Most of these jobs are tasks that can be done with little to no training (Stay at home parents do most of these tasks for free). Since little...

Latest answer posted August 26, 2013 12:36 am UTC

1 educator answer

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

The social and economic status of maids and other domestic workers is low. Maids are paid wages that do not constitute a living-wage income. Many domestic workers are paid under the table (or "off...

Latest answer posted February 4, 2013 12:07 am UTC

1 educator answer

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

Ehrenreich refers to a "living wage" very early on in her book (page 3) but only loosely defines it as a wage that allows you to survive economically, pay for basic needs such as food, shelter,...

Latest answer posted December 13, 2010 1:21 am UTC

1 educator answer

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

This an a pretty broad question and I am sure that you will get many different answers. Here are a few values that I think has been important to America over the years. First, I believe that there...

Latest answer posted December 11, 2009 2:15 am UTC

1 educator answer

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

In writing her book, Barbara Ehrenreich went undercover, working as a housemaid, grocery store clerk, and waitress in order to discover the difficulties that face the American lower-class workers....

Latest answer posted March 24, 2020 3:16 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

When she is working as a maid in Maine, Barbara Ehrenreich develops a rash of unknown origin. She also begins to suffer from various aches and pains caused by the rigors of her job. Barbara is a...

Latest answer posted April 23, 2009 3:21 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

I’m not 100% sure that if low-wage workers were paid more salary, they would set aside money for health insurance premiums, particularly if they are young and healthy. Part of the current debate on...

Latest answer posted October 19, 2009 5:27 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

Barbara Ehrenreich funded the study through two main sources: first, the wages and tips she earned through the various jobs she undertook during her experiments in various parts of the country;...

Latest answer posted July 31, 2011 8:26 am UTC

1 educator answer

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America

Ehrenreich doesn't intend to be a waitress at all when she starts looking for her first minimum wage situation because she remembers how physically demanding that work was when she worked as a...

Latest answer posted February 7, 2012 9:58 am UTC

1 educator answer

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