Going, going, gone
June 29, 2018 11:56 AM   Subscribe

“It’s an unsettled identity, and you can fall out of it, you can barely get into it, you certainly can’t rise above it very easily. Guy Standing coined the term precariat in 2011 to describe the proletariat, which is a Marxist way of understanding the working class, crossed with precariousness. And people get that. Every time they ride an Uber or they have a gig economy Task Rabbit person come to their house they’re like, OK, that’s the precariat. But I was seeing the same thing among paralegals or those who have law degrees but were still doing temporary work.” Reimagining the Middle Class, a talk with Alissa Quart about her new book, Squeezed: Why Our Families Can’t Afford America.
posted by The Whelk (9 comments total) 31 users marked this as a favorite
 
Yupper.
posted by Melismata at 12:44 PM on June 29, 2018


"The forever clock" really rings true.

Despite demonstrable gains in productivity, it's just expected that you'll come in on weekends since there is still more stuff to do and oddly never enough resources to do the work.
posted by fifteen schnitzengruben is my limit at 1:03 PM on June 29, 2018


Most certainly Guy Standing did not coin the word precariat. In both French and Italian there is precedent of its use a decade or two earlier.
posted by talos at 5:02 PM on June 29, 2018 [2 favorites]


Did I miss the part where we talk about solutions? Does it involve eating the rich?

Capitalism won so hard for those with money that no one else has any money to buy anything and everyone is now swimming in debt.
posted by advicepig at 6:52 PM on June 29, 2018 [3 favorites]


But all will be fine now for the werkers of Amerika--we have a short form income tax! Other than the fact that you still have to fill out six pages of crap to get the final total to plug in.


Soon there will be jobs for all, a chicken in every pot, and pie in the sky, says the Cheeto in charge. It's all the fault of those damn unions, that pesky minimum wage and too much corporate regulation.
posted by BlueHorse at 8:35 PM on June 29, 2018 [1 favorite]


And the book causes us to ask why so many suffer in isolation too ashamed to acknowledge their economic plight and too belabored to politically address it.

That's why. And perhaps some dread that with acknowledgment and alignment comes permanency.
posted by snuffleupagus at 6:39 AM on July 1, 2018




And the book causes us to ask why so many suffer in isolation too ashamed to acknowledge their economic plight and too belabored to politically address it.

That's why. And perhaps some dread that with acknowledgment and alignment comes permanency.


Not EVERY problem in America is due to the weirdly alienated and atomized nature of living here and the Protestant work ethic but SOME of it is and I think this is a part of it.

When was the last time you asked someone if they could come up with 600$ to cover an emergency? When was the last time you talked frankly about money to a friend or co-worker? Realizing we re all in this together is part of the way we can get out of it.
posted by The Whelk at 11:56 AM on July 1, 2018 [4 favorites]




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