What Work Is

Univ. of Illinois. Jan. 2024. 232p. ISBN 9780252087608. pap. $24.95. POL SCI
In this book, Bruno (labor and employment relations, Univ. of Illinois Urbana-Champaign; How Class Works in Youngtown) asks his graduate students to express what work means to them in six words or less. Their responses were divided and analyzed in five categories: work and time; the space workers occupy; the importance of work in one’s daily lives; the sense of purpose that motivates people to work; and the employer. The author points out how educators can do a better job of showing students how to become more effective members of the workforce. He says they could also teach students how to make better career choices and improve their working options and conditions. He proposes having stronger unions, a shorter work week, fair and better compensation, and mandatory pay for overtime. He asserts that if these options are incorporated into workplace standards and maintained, it will improve employees’ motivation.
VERDICT A solid book and analysis about labor conditions and feasible ways to improve it. This would make a welcome addition to collections.
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