American Literature Readings in the 21st Century

The Culture of Soft Work

Labor, Gender, and Race in Postmodern American Narrative

Authors: Hicks, H.

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About this book

The Culture of Soft Work examines American writers' responses to human resource management and motivational techniques in the workplace through readings of postmodern novels and a diverse range of other canonical and popular texts.

About the authors

Heather J. Hicks is Associate Professor and Director of Graduate Studies in the Department of English at Villanova University, USA.

Reviews

"Nearly every page of this book taught me something new. In a series of nuanced readings, Hicks demonstrates the unexpected resonances of human relations management theory, and its progeny in the self-actualization and corporate culture movements, for a range of post-World War II books and films. Hicks joins Jameson, Harvey, and Haraway as an indispensable analyst of the relationship between postmodernism and contemporary capitalism." - Andrew Hoberek, Associate Professor of English, University of Missouri-Columbia and the author of The Twilight Of The Middle Class

"Hicks has produced an excellent literature-based scrutiny of the new managerial narrative and the consequent loss of the social imagination of work. Hers is an astute understanding of the chimera of workplace autonomy and its literary expression in a post industrial and post union world." - Laura Hapke, author of Labor's Text

"Hicks has written an indispensable book . . .Equally at home in management theory and gender studies, she shows that literature and film can offer powerful insight into recent management strategies that seek to control the workplace by controlling the affective lives of workers." - James F. Knapp, author of Literary Modernism and the Transformation of Work

"What is perhaps most innovative and suggestive about Hicks The Culture of Soft Work lies in its argument for the prevalence of representations of work in fiction and film of the latter decades of the twentieth century but in a form other than traditional working-class literature." - Magali Cornier Michael, Professor and Chair, Department of English, Duquesne University and author of New Visions of Community in Contemporary American Fiction


Table of contents (8 chapters)

Table of contents (8 chapters)
  • Introduction

    Pages 1-14

    Hicks, Heather J.

  • “No Good to Anybody”: Player Piano, General Electric, and the Consumption of Work

    Pages 15-44

    Hicks, Heather J.

  • Soft Soap, Snow Jobs, and Apartment Keys: Human Relations Management in Mid-Century Literature and Film

    Pages 45-87

    Hicks, Heather J.

  • Automating Feminism: Self-Actualization versus the Post-Work Society in Joanna Russ’s The Female Man

    Pages 89-111

    Hicks, Heather J.

  • A Cyborg’s Work Is Never Done: Programming Cyborgs, Workaholics, and Feminists in Marge Piercy’s He, She, and It

    Pages 113-137

    Hicks, Heather J.

Buy this book

eBook $89.00
price for USA
  • ISBN 978-0-230-61791-9
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: PDF
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase and usable on all devices
  • Bulk discounts available
Hardcover $120.00
price for USA
Softcover $115.00
price for USA

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Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
The Culture of Soft Work
Book Subtitle
Labor, Gender, and Race in Postmodern American Narrative
Authors
Series Title
American Literature Readings in the 21st Century
Copyright
2009
Publisher
Palgrave Macmillan US
Copyright Holder
Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Nature America Inc.
eBook ISBN
978-0-230-61791-9
DOI
10.1057/9780230617919
Hardcover ISBN
978-0-230-60823-8
Softcover ISBN
978-1-349-37500-4
Series ISSN
2634-579X
Edition Number
1
Number of Pages
XII, 267
Topics