Jobs Aren't Enough: Toward a New Economic Mobility for Low-Income Families


In this gripping ethnographic account, Roberta Iversen and Annie Laurie Armstrong examine the obstacles to economic mobility for low- and increasingly middle-income families in 21st century America. The 'voices' of twenty-five families in Milwaukee, New Orleans, Philadelphia, St. Louis, Seattle and of hundreds of people who are linked to the families' lives, show that the historic myths about opportunity, merit, and 'bootstraps' are outdated and, in some cases, downright dangerous for many urban workers and their families. Iversen and Armstrong show that the social institutions of family, education, labour market and policy all intersect to influence mobility. Jobs Aren't Enoughproposes a new mobility paradigm grounded in cooperation, collaboration, mutuality and revitalization of the 'public will' to maximize both "household and profit."

Additional information

Includes content by:
  • Susan Gewirtz
  • Annie E. Casey
Publisher: Place of publication:
  • Philadelphia
Publication year:
  • 2006


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