Nickel and Dimed: On Not Getting by in America Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. Many of the businesses in town seem to place ads in the paper ____________ so as to always have applicants.

2. Barbara will take the ____________ paying minimum wage job she can find when she's off on assignment.

3. Barbara admits she has two things going for her as a minimum wage worker - she is ________ and she is a native English speaker.

4. When the going gets too rough for Barbara, she admits she will use ____________ to get by.

5. What is Barbara's PhD in, according to her own admittance?

Short Essay Questions

1. What will Barbara drive when she is a part of this experiment in working for minimum wage?

2. If things get too rough during this experiment, what does Barbara say she will do in order to feel herself or to support herself?

3. What are some of the other reasons why Barbara doesn't really want to take on the assignment of working for minimum wage?

4. What is the one line of work that Barbara does not even apply for since she does not have the proper clothing?

5. Why does the author think so many managers are needed to manage the low wage workers?

6. What are the titles that Wal-Mart wants its employees to think of themselves as?

7. What do companies seem to give to employees instead of paying them more, according to the author?

8. Describe what 'time theft' is according to Wal-Mart and its slick produced videos that the author watches during orientation.

9. What surprises Barbara about the cleaning method of The Maids, as described in the book?

10. How does the government measure the rate of poverty in the country, according to the author?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

The idea of poverty is one of the most complex issues this world seems to be unable and often unwilling to tackle.

Part 1: How do you define the idea of poverty? Can there be only one definition? Why or why not?

Part 2: Why do you think poverty is so hard for governments to manage?

Part 3: Why do you think people slide into poverty and poverty-conditions?

Essay Topic 2

Many times, the workers Barbara is with seem resigned to the life in which they have been a part.

Part 1: Why do you think the workers Barbara meets don't really understand that things could be better?

Part 2: Why do you think the workers around Barbara don't know their rights and don't believe them when Barbara tells them what they should expect?

Part 3: Why do you think the workers aren't motivated to do more for themselves?

Essay Topic 3

It seems that the odds are against those who are in minimum wage jobs. From the costs of housing to the way these workers are often not paid well, it seems the cycle of poverty may never end.

Part 1: Why do you think minimum wage workers can not get ahead in their lives?

Part 2: Do you think outside influences are the main reasons why people can not lift themselves from poverty? Why or why not?

Part 3: Do you think society willfully creates conditions in which minimum wage workers can not succeed? Why or why not?

(see the answer keys)

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