For Work / Against Work
Debates on the centrality of work

"Employment and Unemployment"

by Jahoda; Marie (1982)


This book was first published in 1982. Unemployment is perhaps one of the most serious social problems. In economic terms the cost of unemployment, both to the individual and to the collective, is extremely high. But unemployment has other effects too. In this book Marie Jahoda looks beyond the obvious economic consequences, to explore the psychological meaning of employment and unemployment. The book is an accessible and nontechnical account of the contribution which social psychology can make to understanding unemployment and clearly reveals the limitations of an exclusive concentration on its economic aspects. Professor Jahoda shows that the psychological impact is hugely destructive, throwing doubt on the popular diagnosis that the work ethic is disappearing. She also analyses the experience of unemployment in the context of the experience of employment and argues that one of the socially destructive consequences of large-scale unemployment is that it detracts from the need to humanise employment.


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Jahoda, Unemployment

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