big bosses a working girl s memoir of jazz age america

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Big Bosses

Author : Althea McDowell Altemus
ISBN : 9780226423760
Genre : Biography & Autobiography
File Size : 75. 41 MB
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Sharp, resourceful, and with a style all her own, Althea Altemus embodied the spirit of the independent working woman of the Jazz Age. In her memoir, Big Bosses, she vividly recounts her life as a secretary for prominent (but thinly disguised) employers in Chicago, Miami, and New York during the late teens and 1920s. Alongside her we rub elbows with movie stars, artists, and high-profile businessmen, and experience lavish estate parties that routinely defied the laws of Prohibition. Beginning with her employment as a private secretary to James Deering of International Harvester, whom she describes as “probably the world’s oldest and wealthiest bachelor playboy,” Altemus tells us much about high society during the time, taking us inside Deering’s glamorous Miami estate, Vizcaya, an Italianate mansion worthy of Gatsby himself. Later, we meet her other notable employers, including Samuel Insull, president of Chicago Edison; New York banker S. W. Straus; and real estate developer Fred F. French. We cinch up our trenchcoats and head out sleuthing in Chicago, hired by the wife of a big boss to find out how he spends his evenings (with, it turns out, a mistress hidden in an apartment within his office, no less). Altemus was also a struggling single mother, a fact she had to keep secret from her employers, and she reveals the difficulties of being a working woman at the time through glimpses into women’s apartments, their friendships, and the dangers—sexual and otherwise—that she and others faced. Throughout, Altemus entertains with a tart and self-aware voice that combines the knowledge of an insider with the wit and clarity of someone on the fringe. Anchored by extensive annotation and an afterword from historian Robin F. Bachin, which contextualizes Altemus’s narrative, Big Bosses provides a one-of-a-kind peek inside the excitement, extravagances, and the challenges of being a working woman roaring through the ’20s.

The Structure Of Wages

Author : Edward P. Lazear
ISBN : 9780226470511
Genre : Business & Economics
File Size : 46. 8 MB
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The distribution of income, the rate of pay raises, and the mobility of employees is crucial to understanding labor economics. Although research abounds on the distribution of wages across individuals in the economy, wage differentials within firms remain a mystery to economists. The first effort to examine linked employer-employee data across countries, The Structure of Wages:An International Comparison analyzes labor trends and their institutional background in the United States and eight European countries. A distinguished team of contributors reveal how a rising wage variance rewards star employees at a higher rate than ever before, how talent becomes concentrated in a few firms over time, and how outside market conditions affect wages in the twenty-first century. From a comparative perspective that examines wage and income differences within and between countries such as Denmark, Italy, and the Netherlands, this volume will be required reading for economists and those working in industrial organization.

Out Of The Pits

Author : Caitlin Zaloom
ISBN : 9780226978130
Genre : Business & Economics
File Size : 72. 24 MB
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From New York to Singapore, from Chicago to London, the trading floors of the world's financial markets are icons of global capitalism. This text is a detailed account of how cities, culture, and technology shape everyday life in the new global economy.

New Developments In Productivity Analysis

Author : Charles R. Hulten
ISBN : 0226360644
Genre : Medical
File Size : 54. 13 MB
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The productivity slowdown of the 1970s and 1980s and the resumption of productivity growth in the 1990s have provoked controversy among policymakers and researchers. Economists have been forced to reexamine fundamental questions of measurement technique. Some researchers argue that econometric approaches to productivity measurement usefully address shortcomings of the dominant index number techniques while others maintain that current productivity statistics underreport damage to the environment. In this book, the contributors propose innovative approaches to these issues. The result is a state-of-the-art exposition of contemporary productivity analysis. Charles R. Hulten is professor of economics at the University of Maryland. He has been a senior research associate at the Urban Institute and is chair of the Conference on Research in Income and Wealth of the National Bureau of Economic Research. Michael Harper is chief of the Division of Productivity Research at the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Edwin R. Dean, formerly associate commissioner for Productivity and Technology at the Bureau of Labor Statistics, is adjunct professor of economics at The George Washington University.

Rethinking America S Highways

Author : Robert W. Poole
ISBN : 9780226557601
Genre : Business & Economics
File Size : 27. 86 MB
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Americans spend hours every day sitting in traffic. And the roads they idle on are often rough and potholed, their exits, tunnels, guardrails, and bridges in terrible disrepair. According to transportation expert Robert Poole, this congestion and deterioration are outcomes of the way America provides its highways. Our twentieth-century model overly politicizes highway investment decisions, short-changing maintenance and often investing in projects whose costs exceed their benefits. In Rethinking America’s Highways, Poole examines how our current model of state-owned highways came about and why it is failing to satisfy its customers. He argues for a new model that treats highways themselves as public utilities—like electricity, telephones, and water supply. If highways were provided commercially, Poole argues, people would pay for highways based on how much they used, and the companies would issue revenue bonds to invest in facilities people were willing to pay for. Arguing for highway investments to be motivated by economic rather than political factors, this book makes a carefully-reasoned and well-documented case for a new approach to highways that is sure to inform future decisions and policies for U.S. infrastructure.

Mark Twain

Author : David W. Levy
ISBN : 0205553753
Genre : Biography & Autobiography
File Size : 31. 71 MB
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Prentice Hall is proud to publish the Library of American Biography series, offering ideal reading for introductory and upper-level courses in American history. These concise biographies focus on individuals whose actions and ideas greatly influenced American history and relate the lives of the subjects to the issues and events of their times. Under series editor Mark C. Carnes, the Library of American Biography series is being revised and updated with today's students in mind. All volumes are offered at a lower price, and each new volume includes Study and Discussion Questions, which encourage readers to reflect on the role of the profiled individual in shaping American history. Like the steamboat on which Mark Twain adopted his pen name, the industrial growth that swept America in the latter half of the nineteenth century prompted Americans to react variously with delight, awe, fear, excitement for the future, and nostalgia for a simpler time. David Levy's biography places Mark Twain and his work in the context of sweeping societal changes: westward expansion, the Civil War, American imperialism, the end of slavery and start of a new chapter in race relations, and the advances and excesses of the Gilded Age.

The Defining Moment

Author : Michael D. Bordo
ISBN : 0226066916
Genre : Business & Economics
File Size : 44. 13 MB
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In contemporary American political discourse, issues related to the scope, authority, and the cost of the federal government are perennially at the center of discussion. Any historical analysis of this topic points directly to the Great Depression, the "moment" to which most historians and economists connect the origins of the fiscal, monetary, and social policies that have characterized American government in the second half of the twentieth century. In the most comprehensive collection of essays available on these topics, The Defining Moment poses the question directly: to what extent, if any, was the Depression a watershed period in the history of the American economy? This volume organizes twelve scholars' responses into four categories: fiscal and monetary policies, the economic expansion of government, the innovation and extension of social programs, and the changing international economy. The central focus across the chapters is the well-known alternations to national government during the 1930s. The Defining Moment attempts to evaluate the significance of the past half-century to the American economy, while not omitting reference to the 1930s. The essays consider whether New Deal-style legislation continues to operate today as originally envisioned, whether it altered government and the economy as substantially as did policies inaugurated during World War II, the 1950s, and the 1960s, and whether the legislation had important precedents before the Depression, specifically during World War I. Some chapters find that, surprisingly, in certain areas such as labor organization, the 1930s responses to the Depression contributed less to lasting change in the economy than a traditional view of the time would suggest. On the whole, however, these essays offer testimony to the Depression's legacy as a "defining moment." The large role of today's government and its methods of intervention—from the pursuit of a more active monetary policy to the maintenance and extension of a wide range of insurance for labor and business—derive from the crisis years of the 1930s.

Demography And The Economy

Author : John B. Shoven
ISBN : 9780226754727
Genre : Business & Economics
File Size : 34. 32 MB
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Demographics is a vital field of study for understanding social and economic change and it has attracted attention in recent years as concerns have grown over the aging populations of developed nations. Demographic studies help make sense of key aspects of the economy, offering insight into trends in fertility, mortality, immigration, and labor force participation, as well as age, gender, and race specific trends in health and disability. Demography and the Economy explores the connections between demography and economics, paying special attention to what demographic trends can reveal about the sustainability of traditional social security programs and the larger implications for economic growth. The volume brings together some of the leading scholars working at the border between the two disciplines, and it provides an eclectic overview of both fields. Contributors also offer deeper analysis of a variety of issues such as the impact of greater wealth on choices about marriage and childbearing and the effects of aging populations on housing prices, Social Security, and Medicare.

Government And The American Economy

Author : Price V. Fishback
ISBN : 0226251292
Genre : History
File Size : 27. 65 MB
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The American economy has provided a level of well-being that has consistently ranked at or near the top of the international ladder. A key source of this success has been widespread participation in political and economic processes. In The Government and the American Economy, leading economic historians chronicle the significance of America’s open-access society and the roles played by government in its unrivaled success story. America’s democratic experiment, the authors show, allowed individuals and interest groups to shape the structure and policies of government, which, in turn, have fostered economic success and innovation by emphasizing private property rights, the rule of law, and protections of individual freedom. In response to new demands for infrastructure, America’s federal structure hastened development by promoting the primacy of states, cities, and national governments. More recently, the economic reach of American government expanded dramatically as the populace accepted stronger limits on its economic freedoms in exchange for the increased security provided by regulation, an expanded welfare state, and a stronger national defense.

Economics For Humans

Author : Julie A. Nelson
ISBN : 9780226572055
Genre : Business & Economics
File Size : 23. 84 MB
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At its core, an economy is about providing goods and services for human well-being. But many economists and critics preach that an economy is something far different: a cold and heartless system that operates outside of human control. In this impassioned and perceptive work, Julie A. Nelson asks a compelling question: If our economic world is something that we as humans create, aren’t ethics and human relationships—dimensions of a full and rich life—intrinsically part of the picture? Is it possible to take this thing we call economics and give it a body and a soul? Economics for Humans argues against the well-ingrained notion that economics is immune to moral values and distant from human relationships. Here, Nelson locates the impediment to envisioning a more considerate economic world in an assumption that is shared by both neoliberals and the political left. Despite their seemingly insurmountable differences, Nelson notes that they both make use of the metaphor, first proposed by Adam Smith, that the economy is a machine. This pervasive idea, Nelson argues, has blinded us to the qualities that make us work and care for one another—qualities that also make businesses thrive and markets grow. We can wed our interest in money with our justifiable concerns about ethics and social well-being. And we can do so if we recognize that an economy is not a machine, but a living, beating heart that circulates blood to all parts of the body while also serving as an emblem of compassion and care. Nothing less than a manifesto, Economics for Humans will both invigorate and inspire readers to reshape the way they view the economy, its possibilities, and their place within it.

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