Skip to main content
Macmillan Childrens Publishing Group
Bait and Switch

Bait and Switch

The (Futile) Pursuit of the American Dream

Barbara Ehrenreich; Read by Anne Twomey

Macmillan Audio

BUY THE BOOK

$19.99

Macmillan Audio

Macmillan Audio

On Sale: 09/07/2005

ISBN: 9781593977313

6:54:0

The bestselling author of Nickel and Dimed goes back undercover to do for America's ailing middle class what she did for the working poor.

Barbara Ehrenreich's Nickel and Dimed explored the lives of low-wage workers. Now, in BAIT AND SWITCH, she enters another hidden realm of the economy—the world of the white-collar unemployed. Armed with a plausible resume of a professional "in transition," attempts to land a "middle class job" undergoing career coaching and personality testing, then begins trawling a series of EST-like "boot camps," job fairs, "networking events," and evangelical job-search "ministries." She gets an "image makeover" to prepare her for the corporate world and works hard to project the "winning attitude" recommended for a successful job search. She is proselytized, scammed, lectured and, again and again, rejected.

BAIT AND SWITCH highlights the people who've done everything right—gotten college degrees, developed marketable skills, and built up impressive resumes—yet have become repeatedly vulnerable to financial disaster and not simply due to the vagaries of the business cycle. Today's ultra-lean corporations take pride in shedding their "surplus" employees—plunging them, for months or years at a stretch, into the twilight zone of white-collar unemployment, where job-searching becomes a full-time job in itself. As Ehrenreich discovers, there are few social supports for the new disposable workers—and little security even for those who have jobs.

Like the now c… More…

The bestselling author of Nickel and Dimed goes back undercover to do for America's ailing middle class what she did for the working poor.

Barbara Ehrenreich's Nickel and Dimed explored the lives of low-wage workers. Now, in BAIT AND SWITCH, she enters another hidden realm of the economy—the world of the white-collar unemployed. Armed with a plausible resume of a professional "in transition," attempts to land a "middle class job" undergoing career coaching and personality testing, then begins trawling a series of EST-like "boot camps," job fairs, "networking events," and evangelical job-search "ministries." She gets an "image makeover" to prepare her for the corporate world and works hard to project the "winning attitude" recommended for a successful job search. She is proselytized, scammed, lectured and, again and again, rejected.

BAIT AND SWITCH highlights the people who've done everything right—gotten college degrees, developed marketable skills, and built up impressive resumes—yet have become repeatedly vulnerable to financial disaster and not simply due to the vagaries of the business cycle. Today's ultra-lean corporations take pride in shedding their "surplus" employees—plunging them, for months or years at a stretch, into the twilight zone of white-collar unemployment, where job-searching becomes a full-time job in itself. As Ehrenreich discovers, there are few social supports for the new disposable workers—and little security even for those who have jobs.

Like the now classic Nickel and Dimed, BAIT AND SWITCH is alternately hilarious and tragic, a searing expose of economic cruelty where we least expect it.

Less…

Quill Award - Nominee

Watch

Bait and Switch by Barbara Ehrenreich--Audiobook Excerpt

Listen to this audiobook excerpt from Barbara Ehrenreich's book Bait and Switch: The (Futile) Pursuit of the American Dream. The bestselling author of Nickel and Dimed goes back undercover to do for America's ailing middle class what she did for the working poor, and enters the world of the white-collar unemployed.

Praise for Bait and Switch

“We have Barbara Ehrenreich to thank for bringing us the news of America's working poor so clearly and directly, and conveying with it a deep moral outrage...She is our premier reporter of the underside of capitalism.” —Dorothy Gallagher, The New York Times Book Review on Nickel and Dimed

“Jarring, full of riveting grit...This book is already unforgettable.” —Newsweek on Nickel and Dimed

“Courageous...a superb and frightening look into the lives of hard-working Americans.” —San Francisco Chronicle on Nickel and Dimed

Reviews from Goodreads

Barbara Ehrenreich; Read by Anne Twomey

Barbara Ehrenreich is the author of many books including The New York Times bestseller Nickel and Dimed. A frequent contributor to Harper's and The Nation, she has been a regular columnist at The New York Times and Time magazine. She lives in Virginia.

image of Barbara Ehrenreicho
Sigrid Estrada

Macmillan Audio

Latest on Facebook

LATEST ON TWITTER