Without a Net: The Female Experience of Growing Up Working Class

Overview

While many recent books have thoughtfully examined the plight of the working poor in America, none of the authors of these books is able to claim a working-class background, and there are associated methodological and ethical concerns raised when most of the explicatory writing on how poverty affects women and girls is done by educated, upper-class journalists. It was these concerns that prompted indie icon Michelle Tea--whose memoir The Chelsea Whistle details her own working-class roots in gritty Chelsea, ...
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Overview

While many recent books have thoughtfully examined the plight of the working poor in America, none of the authors of these books is able to claim a working-class background, and there are associated methodological and ethical concerns raised when most of the explicatory writing on how poverty affects women and girls is done by educated, upper-class journalists. It was these concerns that prompted indie icon Michelle Tea--whose memoir The Chelsea Whistle details her own working-class roots in gritty Chelsea, Massachusetts--to collect these fierce, honest, tender essays written by women who can’t go home to the suburbs when their assignment is over. These wide-ranging essays cover everything from stealing and selling blood to make ends meet, to "jumping" class, how if time equals money then being poor means waiting, surviving and returning to the ghetto and how feminine identity is shaped by poverty. Contributors include Dorothy Allison, Diane Di Prima, Terri Griffith, Daisy Hernández, Frances Varian, Tara Hardy, Shawna Kenney, Siobhan Brooks, Terri Ryan, and more.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781580051033
  • Publisher: Avalon Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 1/9/2004
  • Series: Live Girls
  • Pages: 256
  • Sales rank: 523,634
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.24 (h) x 0.71 (d)

Meet the Author

Michelle Tea is the author of The Passionate Mistakes and Intricate Corruption of One Girl in America, the Lambda award–winning Valencia, and The Chelsea Whistle, and coeditor of Pills, Thrills, Chills, and Heartache. She lives in San Francisco.
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Table of Contents

Introduction
Waiting 1
The Poet and the Pauper 7
Steal Away 15
Farm Use 21
Rain 29
The Prison We Called Home 33
A Catholic Leg 41
My Father's Hands 49
Winter Coat 59
The Just-Add-Water Kennedys and Barbecue Bread Violence 67
Filling 75
Reverse 79
My Memory and Witness 85
Wings 91
There are Holes in My Mandarin Dog Biscuit 97
My Season of Paper Dresses 103
What I Ate Where 109
The Lower-Working-Class Narrative of a Black Chinese American Girl 113
Blueprints and Handwires 119
The Sound of Poverty 127
Dirty Girl 131
Dinner Talk 141
It's Just Blood 147
Ghetto Fabulous 153
Getting Out 161
My Mother was a Whore 167
For Those Who Like to Dig 175
Fighting 185
Scholarship BA 199
Something From Nothing 207
Acknowledgments 215
Contributor Biographies 217
About the Editor ä
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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Posted November 20, 2011

    One of the best books I have ever read.

    I have never read a book that has captured the plight of working class/poor women like this book has. The stories may be heartbreaking and infuriating, but every single woman who contributed to this book has an inner core of steel. They didn't have a choice.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 5, 2004

    A Wonderful Read!

    This book is filled with heart-felt stories that will anger and sadden you but in the end you feel empowered by these womyn of all ethnic backgrounds who have one thing in common...strength. Each story reminds you to appreciate what you have. These are powerful, real essays from powerful, real womyn. My favorite out of this collection is, There are holes in my mandarin dog biscuit by Shell Feijo.

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