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Inside Toyland: Working, Shopping, and Social Inequality
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Inside Toyland: Working, Shopping, and Social Inequality

3.32 of 5 stars 3.32  ·  rating details  ·  56 ratings  ·  5 reviews
"I got my first job working in a toy store when I was 41 years old." So begins sociologist Christine Williams's description of her stint as a low-wage worker at two national toy store chains: one upscale shop and one big box outlet. In this provocative, perceptive, and lively book, studded with rich observations from the shop floor, Williams chronicles her experiences as a ...more
ebook, 264 pages
Published January 9th 2006 by University of California Press (first published December 10th 2005)
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Tiny Pants
CLW hits it out of the park with this one -- this book was fantastic. I would particularly recommend it instead of the Juliet Schor books I recently reviewed. CLW takes a much more nuanced approach, looking not at whether consumption is good or evil, but instead examining how relationships of race, class, and gender are played out in the employment practices, store policies, and customer interactions via ethnographic work in two different toy store chains. Her detailed observation as well as her ...more
Holly Donnelly
Interesting, but kind of depressing. It's tough to aviod shopping in these big box stores where employees are miserably treated, low paid and tracked by gender and race into separate streams of work. I was disappointed that the unionized store the author described had many of the same problems (and closed due to bankruptcy anyway.)Maybe online shopping is the answer. . . Wonder how employees at are faring?
It was an interesting read, although I'd hoped for more "horror stories" about working at toy stores. Definitely a lot of social context and studies/research cited.
The section on teaching kids how to shop was especially interesting. There are a lot of ideas brought up here. In spite of its academic style, it sustains interest.
I liked the chapter on the history of retailer and manufacturer relationships.
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