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Making Gray Gold

Narratives of Nursing Home Care

This first hand report on the work of nurses and other caregivers in a nursing home is set powerfully in the context of wider political, economic, and cultural forces that shape and constrain the quality of care for America’s elderly. Diamond demonstrates in a compelling way the price that business-as-usual policies extract from the elderly as well as those whose work it is to care for them.

In a society in which some two million people live in 16,000 nursing homes, with their numbers escalating daily, this thought-provoking work demands immediate and widespread attention.

"[An] unnerving portrait of what it’s like to work and live in a nursing home. . . . By giving voice to so many unheard residents and workers Diamond has performed an important service for us all."—Diane Cole, New York Newsday

"With Making Gray Gold, Timothy Diamond describes the commodification of long-term care in the most vivid representation in a decade of round-the-clock institutional life. . . . A personal addition to the troublingly impersonal national debate over healthcare reform."—Madonna Harrington Meyer, Contemporary Sociology

Table of Contents

Foreword by Catharine R. Stimpson
Part One: Mining the Raw Materials
"Welcome to the Firing Line of Health Care"
"How Do You Make It on Just One Job?"
"Where’s My Social Security?"
Part Two: Forming the Gold Bricks
"Why Can’t I Get a Little Rest around Here?"
"If It’s Not Charted, It Didn’t Happen"
Part Three: Melting the Gold Bricks Down
"There’s Nothing Wrong with the Scale, It’s the Building That’s Tipped"
Now for "A Little Rest around Here"


Association for Humanist Sociology: Betty and Alfred McClung Lee Book Award

Society for the Study of Social Problems: C. Wright Mills Award

American Sociological Association: Research Comte/Qualitative Approaches/Study of Aging

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