Mollie's Job by William M. Adler
A Story of Life and Work on the Global Assembly Line

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Synopsis

Following the flight of one woman's factory job from the United States to Mexico, this compelling work offers a provocative and fresh perspective on the global economy -- at a time when downsizing is unraveling the American Dream for many working families.
Mollie's Job is an absorbing and affecting narrative history that traces the postwar migration of one factory job as it passes from the cradle of American industry, Paterson, New Jersey, to rural Mississippi during the turmoil of the civil rights movement to the burgeoning border city of Matamoros, Mexico.
This fascinating account follows the intersecting lives and fates of three women -- Mollie James in Paterson, Dorothy Carter in Mississippi, and Balbina Duque in Matamoros, all of whom work the same job as it winds its way south. Mollie's Job is the story of North American labor and capital during the latter half of the twentieth century and the dawn of the twenty-first. The story of these women, their company, and their communities provides an ideal prism through which William Adler explores the larger issues at the heart of the book: the decline of unions and the middle class, the growing gap between rich and poor, public policy that rewards companies for transferring U.S. jobs abroad, the ways in which "free trade" undermines stable businesses and communities, and how the global economy exploits workers on both sides of the border.
At once a social and industrial history; a moving, personal narrative; and a powerful indictment of free trade at any cost, Mollie's Job puts a human face on the political and market forces shaping the world at the dawn of the new millennium and skillfully frames the current debate raging over future trade agreements.
By combining a deft historian's touch with first-rate reporting, Mollie's Job is an unprecedented and revealing look at the flesh-and-blood consequences of globalization.
 

About William M. Adler

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William M. Adler is a freelance writer who has written for numerous publications, including Esquire, Rolling Stone, and the Texas Observer, for which he is a contributing writer. His first book, Land of Opportunity, about the rise and fall of a crack-cocaine empire, was published in 1995. He lives in Austin, Texas.
 
Published February 28, 2001 by Scribner. 368 pages
Genres: Business & Economics, History, Biographies & Memoirs. Non-fiction

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Building on a longstanding commitment to increase industrialization (Mississippi began the “Balance Agriculture with Industry” program in the 1930s), the state lured Universal by offering to transfer the cost of building a new plant to the taxpayers through a bond act.

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Publishers Weekly

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Bringing together the stories of the three women who held the same job (in each of three locales) with the contemporary history of the labor movement, the effects of the Cold War on union organizing, the Ku Klux Klan's role in Southern factory life, voter registration patterns in the South and ev...

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Austin Chronicle

In this study of globalization's effects on one company, it is 1950 and Mollie has traveled from her home in Cartersville, Virginia, to Paterson, New Jersey, where she has gone to meet her fiancé.

Oct 13 2000 | Read Full Review of Mollie's Job: A Story of Life...

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