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On the Web Mon Dec 30 2013

The U.S. Department of Labor's 'Online Book Club' About Work in America

image001.pngUpton Sinclair's The Jungle. Studs Terkel's Working. Alex Kotlowitz's The Other Side of the River. These are books and authors that not only shaped the story of work and class in Chicago, but the entire nation. To celebrate it's centennial, and to remind folks that we're a nation of workers (with the words to prove it), the U.S. Department of Labor has selected these and dozens more titles for an interactive, web-based project called Books That Shaped Work in America.

Planned in conjunction with the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress, the selections include fiction, non-fiction, poetry and children's books (Richard Scarry's What Do People Do All Day?, anyone?), and were chosen by U.S. Secretary of Labor Thomas E. Perez, as well as eight former secretaries of labor from both Democratic and Republican administrations, department staff, civil rights leaders, critics, authors, media personalities and staff from the Library of Congress.

And now you're invited to participate in what Perez calls "an online book club where people from all walks of life can share books that informed them about occupations and careers, molded their views about work and helped elevate the discourse about work, workers and workplaces."

Have an idea? You can add your book via this handy form. But before you do, we'd love to hear which books influenced your ideas about work. Add a title to the comments!


Kristin Ginger / January 3, 2014 1:56 PM

An interesting list! I'd add The Betrayal of Work: How Low-wage Jobs Fail 30 Million Americans And Their Families by Beth Shulman, The Working Poor: Invisible in America by David Shipler, and Grace and Grit: My Fight for Equal Pay and Fairness at Goodyear and Beyond by Lilly Ledbetter.

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