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The one problem was the title: couldn't some prophetic fact-checker have seen that the worst years of our lives—far worse—were still to come? Here they are, the s, and in This Land Is Their Land, Ehrenreich subjects them to the most biting and incisive satire of her career. Taking the measure of what we are left with after the cruelest decade in memory, Ehrenreich finds lurid extremes all around.

While members of the moneyed elite can buy congressmen, many in the working class can barely buy lunch. While a wealthy minority obsessively consumes cosmetic surgery, the poor often go without health care for their children. And while the corporate C-suites are now nests of criminality, the less fortunate are fed a diet of morality, marriage, and abstinence. Ehrenreich's antidotes are as sardonic as they are spot-on: pet insurance for your kids; Salvation Army fashions for those who can no longer afford Wal-Mart; and boundless rage against those who have given us a nation scarred by deepening inequality, corroded by distrust, and shamed by its official cruelty.

Full of wit and generosity, these reports from a divided nation show once again that Ehrenreich is, as Molly Ivins said, "good for the soul. Account Options Sign in. Top charts. New arrivals.

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Switch to the audiobook. In a remarkable pairing, two renowned social critics offer a groundbreaking anthology that examines the unexplored consequences of globalization on the lives of women worldwide Women are moving around the globe as never before. Reviews Review Policy. Published on. Flowing text. Best For. Web, Tablet, Phone, eReader.

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More related to immigration. See more. Immigrant Women Workers in the Neoliberal Age. Nilda Flores-Gonzalez. To date, most research on immigrant women and labor forces has focused on the participation of immigrant women on formal labor markets. In this study, contributors focus on informal economies such as health care, domestic work, street vending, and the garment industry, where displaced and undocumented women are more likely to work.

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Because such informal labor markets are unregulated, many of these workers face abusive working conditions that are not reported for fear of job loss or deportation. In examining the complex dynamics of how immigrant women navigate political and economic uncertainties, this collection highlights the important role of citizenship status in defining immigrant women's opportunities, wages, and labor conditions.

Domestic and care work in private households is now the largest employment sector for migrant women. Foreign Service. Margaret Bender. An Indian-born foreign service officer killed in the U. A French-speaking woman from a remote village in Gabon. These are just three of the women whose stories are told in this book-women born in other countries who, through their marriages to American diplomats, became representatives of the United States. While they experience immigrant life in a unique way, they share the challenges faced by other women in cross-cultural marriages away from their own countries.

Jennifer Guglielmo. Italians were the largest group of immigrants to the United States at the turn of the twentieth century, and hundreds of thousands led and participated in some of the period's most volatile labor strikes. Jennifer Guglielmo brings to life the Italian working-class women of New York and New Jersey who helped shape the vibrant radical political culture that expanded into the emerging industrial union movement.

The movement of care workers from south to north is not altogether new. What is unprecedented, however, is the scope and speed of women's migration to these jobs. Many factors contribute to the growing feminization of migration.


One is the growing split between the global rich and poor. In Harry S. In , for example, the nations of the north were twenty times richer than those of the south. By , that gap had more than doubled, and the north was forty-six times richer than the south.

In fact, according to a United Nations Development Program study, sixty countries are worse off in than they were in The remittances these women send home provide food and shelter for their families and often a nest egg with which to start a small business. Thanks to the spread of Western, and especially American, movies and television programs, the people of the poor south now know a great deal about the rich north. But what they learn about the north is what people have, in what often seems like a material striptease. Certainly, rising inequality and the lure of northern prosperity have contributed to what Stephen Castles and Mark Miller call a "globalization of migration.

Since and especially since the mids, a small but growing proportion of the world's population is migrating. They come from and go to more different countries. Migration is by no means an inexorable process, but as Castles and Miller observe, "migrations are growing in volume in all major regions at the present time.

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Of this group, about 2 percent of the world's population, 15 to 23 million are refugees and asylumseekers. Of the rest, some move to join family members who have previously migrated. But most move to find work. As a number of studies show, most migration takes place through personal contact with networks of migrants composed of relatives and friends and relatives and friends of relatives and friends. One migrant inducts another. Whole networks and neighborhoods leave to work abroad, bringing back stories, money, know-how, and contacts.

Just as men form networks along which information about jobs are passed, so one domestic worker in New York, Dubai, or Paris passes on information to female relatives or friends about how to arrange papers, travel, find a job, and settle. Today, half of all the world's migrants are women.

Global Woman: Nannies, Maids, and Sex Workers in the New Economy by Barbara Ehrenreich

That figure excludes returnees who have worked abroad in the past. As Castles and Miller explain: Women play an increasing role in all regions and all types of migration. In the past, most labor migrations and many refugee movements were male dominated, and women were often dealt with under the category of family reunion.

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  4. Since the s, women have played a major role in labor migration. They work longer hours for more months a year and more years. So they need help caring for the family. Seventy-two percent of all American women now work.

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    Among them are the grandmothers and sisterswho thirty years ago might have stayed home to care for the children of relatives. Women who want to succeed in a professional or managerial job in the First World thus face strong pressures at work. Most careers are still based on a well-known male pattern: doing professional work, competing with fellow professionals, getting credit for work, building a reputation, doing it while you are young, hoarding scarce time, and minimizing family work by finding someone else to do it.

    In the past, the professional was a man; the "someone else" was his wife. The wife oversaw the family, itself a flexible, preindustrial institution concerned with human experiences the workplace excluded: birth, child rearing, sickness, death. Today, a growing "care industry" has stepped into the traditional wife's role, creating a very real demand for migrant women. But if First World middle-class women are building careers that are molded according to the old male model, by putting in long hours at demanding jobs, their nannies and other domestic workers suffer a greatly exaggerated version of the same thing.

    Two women working for pay is not a bad idea. But two working mothers giving their all to work is a good idea gone haywire.