Arlie Russell Hochschild, author of three New York Times Notable Books, has been one of the freshest and most popular voices in feminist sociology over the last decades. Her influential, unusually perceptive work has opened up new ways of seeing family life, love, gender, the workplace, market transactions—indeed, American life itself. This book gathers some of Hochschild's most important and most widely read articles in one place, includes new work, and brings several essays to American audiences for the first time. Each chapter reflects on the complex negotiations we make day to day to juggle the conflicting demands of love and work. Taken together, they are a compelling, often startling, look at how our everyday lives are shaped by modern capitalism.
These essays, rich with the details of everyday life, explore larger social issues by looking at a series of intimate moments in people's lives. Among them, "Love and Gold" investigates the globalization of love by focusing on care workers who leave their own children and elderly to care for children and the elderly in wealthy countries. In "The Commodity Frontier," Hochschild considers an Internet ad for a "beautiful, smart, hostess, good masseuse—$400/week," and explores our responses to personal services for hire. In "From the Frying Pan into the Fire" she asks if capitalism is a religion. In addition to these recent essays, several of Hochschild's important early essays, such as "Inside the Clockwork of Male Careers," have been revised and updated for this collection.