Review of Shipler's the Working Poor Essay

2602 Words Jan 15th, 2013 11 Pages
In David K. Shipler’s book, The Working Poor Invisible in America the reader is provided a peek into the personal stories of the inner lives of eight families struggling inside the vicious cycle of poverty. Shipler’s method of interviews, narratives of personal stories and observation represents an innovative study investigating the working poor in an attempt to understand “how people in real communities devise collective responses to their problems (Segal, 2010).”
A. Barriers
In a absorbing way that made me cringe at times, Shipler allows these ‘invisible’ poor to narrate in their personal stories the structural, social, economic and cultural barriers that impact the families. Although I tend to disagree, Shipler admits that one major
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In addition, Shipler points out that a lack of quality education is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the necessary social and mechanical skills necessary to realistically prepare them for employment (Shipler, 2004).
Health care has become a form of governmental oppression. There are little to no funding for preventative care as Shipler points out in his scathing review of the bureaucratic nightmare of merely staying healthy enough to go to school if you are poor (Shipler, 2004). America’s private health insurance industry makes it almost impossible for those of lesser financial means to have access to good health insurance (Shipler, 2004). Our economic state makes it impossibly expensive to eat healthy, let alone to practice healthy lifestyle habits that are not taught regularly. In addition, the health care providers themselves and those individuals with forced health care plans are faced with the enormous expenses of crooked insurance adjustors and giant malpractice insurance regimes (Shipler, 2004).
Further barriers include the surrounding neighborhoods where the poor grow up. Rarely are there any positive role models for children to observe. Instead, poverty stricken areas are proportionately heavier in crime and drugs (Segal, 2010). In most inner-city impoverished neighborhoods the criminals and drug dealers are the only models…

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