Hospital Workers: A Case Study in the "New Working Class"

  • John A. Ehrenreich
  • Barbara Ehrenreich
Keywords: Ecology, Labor


The kind of work most people do has been changing rapidly in the United States and other capitalist countries. Only a few decades ago, most working people performed unskilled or semi-skilled industrial labor, and "the working class" was predominantly the traditional blue-collar proletariat. Today, service workers, white-collar workers, highly educated technical and professional workers—the so-called "new working class"—together make up a majority of the American work force. At the same time, the organization and content of white-collar and service work have also been changing, taking on patterns reminiscent of traditional industrial work.