Analysis of Studs Terkel's Book and the World of Work

1310 words 6 pages
Many people in today’s society find themselves guilty of believing the common misconception that money can buy happiness. They go to school to become a doctor, lawyer, or other high paying job, with money and social status as their only incentives. Many will find that they have fallen into a trap, when they start earning their large salary, but still are not happy. While there were many messages present throughout Studs Terkels Working: a graphic adaptation, the most important reoccurring message seemed to be that having pride and dignity as well as working at a job that fulfills one’s life passion or is simply enjoyable are more important qualities than earning a large salary and having a high rank on the social ladder. The interaction of …show more content…
This is a profession that everyone has looked up to. Everyone likes to receive mail!” (59). The cartoons drawn in the monologue also match the voice of the reader, showing him always delivering the mail with a smile on his face. Even though he has to work two jobs and have his wife work, just to support his family, the visuals still show him looking upbeat and passionate about delivering the mail. The interaction between the text and the visuals greatly contribute to the happy tone of the monologue, and also add meaning to the message that even though John doesn’t earn a lot of money, overall he is happy and content with his life because he is doing something he loves. Another example that does a great job of illustrating the main message of the book is Dolores Dante’s monologue about being a waitress. Unlike the monologue about John Fuller where being a mail man is his life’s ambition, Dolores Dante becomes a waitress because she needs money, but winds up making the best out of the situation, and really enjoying her job. Dolores explains in her monologue that people would look down upon her for being a waitress and would be genuinely surprised when they realized what a great person she was, making comments such as “You’re great, how come you’re just a waitress?” (77). These comments would always infuriate her because she has a lot of pride and dignity about being a waitress. This is evident in the text when Dolores makes comments like “I don’t want to

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