- Hardcover: 320 pages
- Publisher: Ecco; First Edition, First Printing edition (June 26, 2018)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0062412256
- ISBN-13: 978-0062412256
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 1 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 66 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #35,542 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Squeezed: Why Our Families Can't Afford America Hardcover – June 26, 2018
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“The issue is overwhelmingly structural and social, not individual or moral. We haven’t failed; Capitalism has failed us. As Quart reminds her reader—and as every story in the book is meant to illustrate—the economic bind we find ourselves in cannot be solved by personal discipline or better financial decisions.” (New York Times Book Review)
“Quart is a sympathetic listener, getting people to reveal not just the tenuousness of their economic situations but also the turbulence of their emotional lives... We could all use her expert guidance through the maze.” (New York Times)
“An eye-opening look at the forces that make it harder than ever for the middle class to survive.” (People)
“Squeezed captures well the toxic combination of American individualism and the disrupted evolution of particular professions that has left millions of millennials in a more fragile financial condition than they expected would be their lot in life.” (The Washington Post)
“It’s not often that you can call a densely reported work of literary non-fiction about economic inequality a riveting page-turner, but Squeezed is just that.” (The Guardian)
“In a nation beset by income inequality and riven by conflict, the conception of the quiet contentment of middle-class American life appears to be on the wane. . . . Alissa Quart . . . lucidly demonstrates that for many, the dream of such satisfaction is increasingly out of reach.” (Boston Globe)
“The stories of a falling down middle class reflect a felt experience of anxiety that is often lost in data-driven tales of recession and recovery.” (Financial Times)
“On the day that Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez accomplished her remarkable victory in the Democratic primary . . . a new book arrived, as if by cosmic fiat, to help explain the emerging realignments of the political order: Squeezed.” (Ginia Bellafante, The New York Times )
“Squeezed captures the dazed uncertainty of a post-recession generation of would-be parents for whom stagnant wages and ever-rising housing costs make them can’t-be ones...Quart [has] a knack for immersive, in-depth reporting, as well as an often-bruised sense of unlikely optimism.” (Bitch Magazine)
“Think of Alissa Quart’s new book . . . as “What to Expect When You’re Expecting Under Late Capitalism.” Of the more than 50,000 books listed on Amazon under ‘Parenting,’ few engage as deeply with the economic pressures today’s parents must navigate.” (In These Times)
From the Back Cover
The middle-class American Dream is imploding. Squeezed shows how the high cost of parenthood and our unstable job market got us here and offers surprising solutions for improving our condition.
Families today are squeezed on every side—from high child care costs and harsh employment policies to workplaces without paid family leave or even dependable and regular working hours. Many realize that attaining the standard of living their parents managed has become nearly impossible.
Alissa Quart, executive editor of the Economic Hardship Reporting Project, examines the lives of middle-class Americans who can now barely afford to raise children. Through gripping storytelling and elegant prose, Quart shows how our country has failed its families. Her subjects—from professors to lawyers to caregivers to nurses—have been wrung out by a system that doesn’t support them, and enriches only a tiny elite.
Interlacing her own experience with close-up reporting on families that are just getting by, Quart reveals parenthood itself to be financially overwhelming, except for the wealthiest. She also provides real solutions, outlining necessary policy shifts, as well as detailing the DIY tactics some families have embraced. And she offers a blueprint for helping us to see parenting and caregiving as truly valuable, not only emotionally but professionally and politically.
Written in the spirit of Barbara Ehrenreich and Jennifer Senior, Squeezed is an eye-opening page-turner. Powerfully argued, deeply reported, and ultimately hopeful, it casts a bright, clarifying light on families struggling to thrive in an economy that holds too few options. It will make readers think differently about their lives and those of their neighbors.
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I wish I could say Quart is wrong in every way, but I cannot.
This is an easy read about how it should not be.
In the final conclusion, the author suggests we can wait for our leaders, our courts, and our corporations to help us out of the squeeze. I hope you enjoy really long waits…
Expect gig jobs for the future.
There are enough facts around inequality and income disparity as well as the rising cost of living to make this a compelling read without resorting to stories that call into question the decision making of those involved. In the end it does a disservice to the problem.