Families on the Fault Line: America's Working Class Speaks about the Family, the Economy, Race, and Ethnicity

Lillian B. Rubin, Author HarperCollins Publishers $23 (284p) ISBN 978-0-06-016741-7
Some 20 years after her work Worlds of Pain , Rubin again explores the working class, finding that economic decline and the increased presence and demands of minorities have led to greater racial and ethnic polarization. She writes in smooth prose, but her study--based on nearly 400 interviews with different races and ethnic groups--rarely goes deep. Nevertheless, she makes worthwhile points: even working-class Americans believe in the myth of a classless society; divorce often brings economic devastation to women; we have yet to adequately address family needs like day care, parental leave and affordable housing. Fears of joblessness and homelessness have increased greatly among her subjects, and they no longer expect to own homes and live securely. Only if we reckon with our national problems, she warns, will we find the path to change. $50,000 ad/promo; first serial to Tikkun; author tour. (Mar.)
Reviewed on: 01/31/1994
Release date: 02/01/1994
Paperback - 304 pages - 978-0-06-092229-0
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