New Stuff Tuesday – February 24, 2015

Boom Bust Exodus

Boom, Bust, Exodus:
The Rust Belt, the Maquilas, and a Tale of Two Cities
by Chad Broughton
HC108 .G26 B76 2015
New Arrivals, 2nd floor

My fridge is on the fritz — soupy ice-cream, meat that’s likely crawling with e. coli — you get the picture. But now that I’ve read this book, I can’t even drool over the shiny new refrigerators at the appliance store without a twinge of guilt.

Univ. of Chicago public policy lecturer, Chad Broughton, explores globalization at a very local level by peering into the lives of former workers at the now-shuttered Maytag refrigerator plant in Galesburg, Illinois and current workers at a gleaming city-sized maquila (factory) in Reynosa, Mexico where the refrigerators now roll off the assembly line. The prospects for both cities and their factory workers are pretty bleak. But at least when the Galesburg workers were still on the job they could afford the products they made, while the appliances are only a cool chimera for the Reynosa workers. Globalization takes on a whole new — and not very glamorous — meaning when seen in action.

My review of this book in the January 1, 2015 Library Journal, is available in Academic Search Complete (EBSCO).

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