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Charis welcomes authors Amanda Freeman and Lisa Dodson in conversation with Leng Leng Chancey for a discussion of Getting Me Cheap: How Low-Wage Work Traps Women and Girls in Poverty. Two groundbreaking sociologists explore the way the American dream is built on the backs of working poor women. Many Americans take comfort and convenience for granted. We eat at nice restaurants, order groceries online, and hire nannies to care for kids. This event is co-hosted by 9to5, one of the largest, most respected national membership organizations of working women in the U.S., dedicated to putting working women’s issues on the public agenda.
Getting Me Cheap is a riveting portrait of the lives of the low-wage workers--primarily women--who make this lifestyle possible. Sociologists Lisa Dodson and Amanda Freeman follow women in the food, health care, home care, and other low-wage industries as they struggle to balance mothering with bad jobs and without public aid. While these women tend to the needs of well-off families, their own children frequently step into premature adult roles, providing care for siblings and aging family members.
Based on years of in-depth field work and hundreds of eye-opening interviews, Getting Me Cheap explores how America traps millions of women and their children into lives of stunted opportunity and poverty in service of giving others of us the lives we seek. Destined to rank with works like Evicted and Nickle and Dimed for its revelatory glimpse into how our society functions behind the scenes, Getting Me Cheap also offers a way forward--with both policy solutions and a keen moral vision for organizing women across class lines.
Amanda Freeman is an assistant professor of sociology at the University of Hartford and a writer and researcher of motherhood and work. She lives in Westport, Connecticut, and Getting Me Cheap (The New Press) is her first book.
Lisa Dodson is Research Professor Emerita at Boston College. She is the author of The Moral Underground: How Ordinary Americans Subvert an Unfair Economy and co-author (with Amanda Freeman) of Getting Me Cheap: How Low Wage Work Traps Women and Girls in Poverty (both from The New Press) and Don’t Call Us Out of Name. She lives in Portland, Oregon.
Leng Leng Chancey is an activist, an organizer, and champion of equity and liberation. Her long-standing passions revolve around social justice issues concerning communities of color with “equitable access for all” as her motto. Currently, she is the executive director of 9to5 national association of working women. 9to5 is a national organization on the frontlines working for women’s rights through a gender and racial justice lens. The organization has a national network of grassroots advocates and offices in Colorado, Georgia and Wisconsin and members throughout the country.
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Two groundbreaking sociologists explore the way the American dream is built on the backs of working poor women
Many Americans take comfort and convenience for granted. We eat at nice restaurants, order groceries online, and hire nannies to care for kids.
Called a fascinating exploration of economic civil disobedience by Publishers Weekly, Lisa Dodson's stunning book The Moral Underground features stories of middle-class managers and professionals who refuse to be complicit in an economy that puts a decent life beyond the reach of the working poor.
A radically new vision of women and girls living below the poverty line; Lisa Dodson makes a frontal assault on conventional attitudes and stereotypes of women in poor America and the seriously misguided "welfare reform" policies of the end of the century.