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This Land Is Their Land

Reports from a Divided Nation

This book can be downloaded and read in Apple Books on your Mac or iOS device.


America in the 'aughts—hilariously skewered, brilliantly dissected, and darkly diagnosed by the bestselling social critic hailed as "the soul mate"* of Jonathan Swift

Barbara Ehrenreich's first book of satirical commentary, The Worst Years of Our Lives, about the Reagan era, was received with bestselling acclaim. The one problem was the title: couldn't some prophetic fact-checker have seen that the worst years of our lives—far worse—were still to come? Here they are, the 2000s, and in This Land Is Their Land, Ehrenreich subjects them to the most biting and incisive satire of her career.

Taking the measure of what we are left with after the cruelest decade in memory, Ehrenreich finds lurid extremes all around. While members of the moneyed elite can buy congressmen, many in the working class can barely buy lunch. While a wealthy minority obsessively consumes cosmetic surgery, the poor often go without health care for their children. And while the corporate C-suites are now nests of criminality, the less fortunate are fed a diet of morality, marriage, and abstinence. Ehrenreich's antidotes are as sardonic as they are spot-on: pet insurance for your kids; Salvation Army fashions for those who can no longer afford Wal-Mart; and boundless rage against those who have given us a nation scarred by deepening inequality, corroded by distrust, and shamed by its official cruelty.

Full of wit and generosity, these reports from a divided nation show once again that Ehrenreich is, as Molly Ivins said, "good for the soul."
*The Times (London)

From Publishers Weekly

Mar 24, 2008 – When a hospital employee whose hospital-supplied insurance doesn't cover her hospital-incurred bill finds her wages garnished, where's a political satirist to go for material? Feisty, fearlessly progressive Ehrenreich offers laughter on the way to tears in 62 previously published essays that show the rich getting richer and poor getting poorer. She investigates pockets of poverty among undocumented workers, military families and recent college graduates. Ehrenreich's reach is capacious, encompassing not only unemployment, health insurance and inflation, but corporate spying, cancer studies, marriage education, the abstinence training business and Disney's Princess products. Her passion, compassion and wit keep these excursions lively and timely even when yesterday's headlines provide the immediate provocation, e.g., JetBlue's snow snafu. The vignettes go down a bit like eating peanuts too many at one time palls, but they're not unhealthy, unless you have an allergic reaction to Ehrenreich's message: America is being polarized between the superrich few and the subrich everyone else. Entertaining Ehrenreich certainly is, but she raises a hard, serious question: How many 'wake-up calls' do we need, people...?
This Land Is Their Land
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  • $9.99
  • Available on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac.
  • Category: Social Science
  • Published: Jun 24, 2008
  • Publisher: Henry Holt and Co.
  • Seller: Macmillan
  • Print Length: 256 Pages
  • Language: English
  • Requirements: This book can only be viewed on an iOS device with Apple Books on iOS 12 or later, iBooks 1.3.1 or later and iOS 4.3.3 or later, or a Mac with iBooks 1.0 or later and OS X 10.9 or later.

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