The Importance of Work in an Age of Uncertainty: The Eroding Work Experience in America

ISBN : 9780190213701

David L. Blustein
264 ページ
156 x 235 mm

Work plays an essential role in how we engage with the world, reflecting our desire to be productive, creative, and connected to others. By exploring the inner experiences of people at work, people seeking work, and people transitioning in and out of work, this book provides a rich and complex picture of the contemporary work experience. Drawing from extensive interviews with working people across the US, as well as insights from psychological research on work and careers, the book provides compelling evidence that the nature of work in the US is eroding- and with powerful psychological and social consequences. From this conclusion, the book also illustrates the rationale and roadmap for a renewed agenda toward full employment and toward fair and dignified jobs for all who want to work. The emotional insights complement the conclusions of the best science and policy analyses on working, culminating in a powerful call for policies that attend to the real lives of individuals in 21st century America. By weaving these various sources together, Blustein delineates a conception of working that conveys its complexity, richness, and capacity for both joy and despair.


1. Being alive: Work as a central role in life
2. Being able to survive and thrive
3. Being with others
4. Being part of something bigger than ourselves
5. Being motivated: Being the best we can be
6. Being able to care
7. Being able to work without oppression and harassment
8. Being without work
9. Being able to work with dignity and opportunity: A human birthright


David L. Blustein is Professor in the Department of Counseling, Developmental, and Educational Psychology at the Lynch School of Education at Boston College. He has published over 120 journal articles and book chapters on the psychology of working, career development, work-based transitions, the exploration process, the interface between work and mental health, and the future of work. He is the author of The Psychology of Working: A New Perspective for Career Development, Counseling, and Public Policy and the editor of the Oxford Handbook of the Psychology of Working. Professor Blustein is a Fellow of the American Psychological Association, the National Career Development Association, and the American Educational Research Association, and he is the recipient of the John Holland Award for Outstanding Achievement in Personality and Career Research, the Extended Research Award by the American Counseling Association, and an Eminent Career Award from the National Career Development; Association. In addition to his academic, scholarly, and public policy work, he also has served as a practicing counseling psychologist, providing psychotherapy and work-based counseling to adults and late adolescents.