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America’s Working Man

Work, Home, and Politics Among Blue Collar Property Owners

Over a period of six years, at factory and warehouse, at the tavern across the road, in their homes and union meetings, on fishing trips and social outings, David Halle talked and listened to workers of an automated chemical plant in New Jersey’s industrial heartland. He has emerged with an unusually comprehensive and convincingly realistic picture of blue-collar life in America. Throughout the book, Halle illustrates his analysis with excerpts of workers’ views on everything from strikes, class consciousness, politics, job security, and toxic chemicals to marriage, betting on horses, God, home-ownership, drinking, adultery, the Super Bowl, and life after death. Halle challenges the stereotypes of the blue-collar mentality and argues that to understand American class consciousness we must shift our focus from the "working class" to be the "working man."

378 pages | 33 halftones, 6 maps | 6.62 x 9.37 | © 1984

Sociology: Occupations, Professions, Work, Social Institutions, Social Organization--Stratification, Mobility

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Introduction
Part 1: Life outside Work
1. The Residential Setting
2. Leisure
3. Marriage and Family
Conclusion to Part 1
Part 2: Blue-Collar Work and the Automated Factory
4. An Automated Plant: Overview
5. The Production Worker in an Automated Plant
6. Support Workers: Mechanics, Laboratory Technicians, Packagers, Warehouse Workers
Conclusion to Part 2
Part 3: The Limits of Mobility at Work: Solidarity and Dispute
7. Occupational Mobility and Security
8. Solidarity and Dispute
Conclusion to Park 3
Part 4: Politics and Class Consciousness
9. Politics and the Structure of Power: Democracy and Freedom
10. Position in the System of Production: The Concept of the Working Man
11. Position outside Work: Income Level, Standard of Living, and Residential Situation
12. Nationalism and Populism
Conclusion to Part 4
Part 5: A Sociology of the Mediocre: Religion, Ethnicity, and National Rituals
13. Religion
14. Ethnicity
15. National Holidays and Cults
16. Conclusion: Class and Politics in America
Appendix: Supplementary Tables
Notes
Bibliography
Index

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