Advertisement

Navigating the Seas of the World of Unemployment in the USA

  • Judy Arnold
Chapter

Abstract

Arnold examines in ethnographic detail the resources needed for the jobless to navigate the world of unemployment in the USA. The US Congress, she notes, has made applying for unemployment insurance so difficult that many candidates deserving of the benefits have fallen by the wayside. She tells the stories of four sets of individuals in Tennessee who qualify for unemployment benefits. The first are professionals who feel shame at being put in the position to be eligible to apply for such benefits. The next group object to applying on political and cultural grounds. The third are temporary workers who are periodically unemployed between jobs. The fourth group come from a poverty culture where social services are the norm and they know how to navigate the system; they want to get away from the ‘stigma’ of social services but do not trust the government and do not want to be involved in government programs.

References

  1. Bureau of Labor Statistics. 2016. The Employment Situation – May. News Release, June 3.Google Scholar
  2. Clifton, Jim. 2015. The Big Lie: 5.6% Unemployment. Gallup, February 3. http://www.gallup.com/opinion/chairman/181469/big-lie-unemployment.aspx
  3. Kendzior, Sarah. 2016. Hollow Promises: Why America’s Impressive 5 Per cent Unemployment Rate Feels Like a Lie For So Many. Quartz, April 20. http://qz.com/666311/why-americas-impressive-5-unemployment-rate-still-feels-like-a-lie/
  4. Long, Heather. 2016. Why Doesn’t 4.9% Unemployment Feel Great? CNN, February 16. http://money.cnn.com/20116/02/06/news/economy/obama-US-jobs/
  5. National Alliance to End Homelessness. 2016. The State of Homelessness in America 2016. Report, April 6. http://www.endhomelessness.org/library/entry/SOH2016
  6. National Employment Monthly Update. 2016. National Unemployment Rate Declines to 4.7 Percent in May 2016. National Conference of State Legislatures, June 3.Google Scholar
  7. Pardo, Italo. 1996. Managing Existence in Naples: Morality, Action and Structure. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  8. ———. 2012. Entrepreneurialism in Naples: Formality and Informality. Urbanities 2 (1): 30–45. www.anthrojournal-urbanities.com
  9. Payne, Ruby K. 2003. A Framework for Understanding Poverty. Highlands, TX: Aha! Process.Google Scholar
  10. Spurlock, Morgan. 2005. Days Minimum Wage. Television Series Episode. Minimum Wage, FX, June 15.Google Scholar
  11. Spyridakis, Manos. 2012. Being an Ex-worker: The Experience of Job Loss in a Tobacco Factory in Piraeus. Urbanities 2 (2): 78–93. www.anthrojournal-urbanities.com
  12. ———. 2013. The Liminal Worker: An Ethnography of Work, Unemployment and Precariousness in Contemporary Greece. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  13. Zumbrun, Josh. 2015. What We Know About the 92 Million Americans Who Aren’t in the Labor Force. The Wall Street Journal, October 21.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Judy Arnold
    • 1
  1. 1.Adjunct faculty, Humanities DepartmentWalters State Community CollegeMorristownUSA

Personalised recommendations