I got an A on every paper.
. please do not turn this in and claim it for yourself, it is merely
a study guide to help you.
In Nickel and Dimed,
Ehrenreich attempts to prove that living on the minimum
wages established by our government is extremely hard if not impossible. For her
experiment, she works multiple low-wage jobs, occasionally two at once. For each
experiment, she analyzes her coworkers, the owners, the hiring procedures, along with
analyzing other factors that she encounters on a daily basis. In addition, she notes that,
unlike the typical low-wage worker, she has no children to support and no debt.
Furthermore, she notes that all of her experiments started out with preexisting funds.
Ehrenreich believes that the biggest problem for low-wage workers is their invisibility in
the eyes of upper and middle class workers. This is a problem, because without
recognition, there is no possibility for change. Ehrenreich concludes that it is extremely
difficult to live off of low-wages. Essentially, working for minimum wage makes the
general working poor hopeless unless the government intervenes with a higher minimum-
In the final chapter “Evaluation,” Ehrenreich concludes that “no job, no matter
how lowly, is truly ‘unskilled’” (193). She continues to say that although she had a Ph.
D., every job that she worked in during this experiment required most, if not all, of her
mental and physical capacity, even in some cases, to the breaking point. Ehrenreich states
that every job, ranging from waiting tables to cleaning floors “presents a self-contained