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Stretched Thin: Poor Families, Welfare Work, and Welfare Reform Paperback – December 15, 2009


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Stretched Thin: Poor Families, Welfare Work, and Welfare Reform + Valuing Children: Rethinking the Economics of the Family (The Family and Public Policy) + Everybody's Children: Child Care as a Public Problem
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Cornell University Press; 1 edition (December 15, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0801475104
  • ISBN-13: 978-0801475108
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.3 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,037,396 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"This is a wonderfully thoughtful and illuminating book. For more than a decade, Sandra Morgen, Joan Acker, and Jill Weigt peered into the workings of the Oregon welfare system after the implementation of the draconian reform of 1996. The result is a closely observant picture of just what went on. We learn about the real human costs to mothers and children of the much-heralded shift to 'work first' and 'personal responsibility.' We also learn about the pressures on the staff of the local agencies as they tried to adapt a neoliberal policy designed in Washington to the exigencies of the lives of the poor and troubled people they were mandated to help."—Frances Fox Piven, Graduate Center of the City University of New York, coauthor (with Richard Cloward) of Regulating the Poor and Poor People's Movements



"Stretched Thin is a tour de force. It proves that the best scholarship makes for good politics. The story is sobering, but presented in highly accessible prose and based on stunning empirical research. It tells us all we need to know about neoliberal social welfare policy today: it fails to deliver for the poor. Here is engaged scholarship at its best. Read it and weep!"—Sanford Schram, author of Welfare Discipline: Discourse, Governance, and Globalization



"A stunning dialogue between ethnography and poverty policy, Stretched Thin takes risks to chronicle the messy moral incongruities that lay at the basis of welfare reform. Sandra Morgen, Joan Acker, and Jill Weigt urge us to face the myths we so readily accept about work, family, and poverty. They have written a classic that will stand the test of time."—Carol Stack, author of All Our Kin and Call To Home


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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Welfare reform was sorely needed. Generations of able bodied people sitting home collecting checks for doing absolutely nothing was an abomination that needed ending. Of course many people will rate me badly for saying that but, I don't live based on approval rates.

Once you get past the liberal dusting of pro-welfare cry baby bias, Stretched Thin: Poor Families, Welfare Work, and Welfare Reform speaks effectively to the many conflicting interests that pull and challenge the case workers and welfare clients alike. Stretched Thin: Poor Families, Welfare Work, and Welfare Reform shows how much of welfare reform is art of fuzzy accounting, plays on words that are the stuff of legend. Stretched Thin: Poor Families, Welfare Work, and Welfare Reform reveals how welfare reform is more about getting people off welfare by any means possible then showing off the lower welfare rolls as indicative of success. Stretched Thin: Poor Families, Welfare Work, and Welfare Reform reveals that most of the so called reductions in welfare roles is achieved by skillful use of political blue smoke and mirrors designed to fool the public into thinking Welfare reform worked.

Unfortunately welfare reform takes us square into discussions of poverty and minimum wage and the capitalist power structure never wants to talk minimum wage because thats thr repubicans dirty little secret. Stretched Thin: Poor Families, Welfare Work, and Welfare Reform shows how many of these welfare folks are ladies who get pushed off welfare only to be forced into slave wage jobs working for giant corporations who make HUGE PROFITS by exploiting their workers. Welfare recipiants are not stupid.
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By P. Fernandez Kelly on September 21, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
One of the best accounts of the effects of so-called "welfare reform" on impoverished people. Indispensable to those seriously interested in finding new ways to correct historical sins.
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