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June 13 , 2008

"Greed Is Good" and Other Fables: Office Life in Popular Culture


The office in popular culture is often depicted as a topsy-turvy parallel universe where psychological disorders are legitimized as "managerial styles" and comically depraved bosses torment those who do the actual work. During the 1950s, the Beats chose denim and the open road over gray flannel suits and office jobs, but today their grandchildren—Generation Y—aggressively covet desk jobs.

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"Greed Is Good" and Other Fables: Office Life in Popular Culture examines how office life is both extolled and lampooned in popular culture. The book tracks how business values ascended to cultural dominance in the United States today, revealing our incessant struggle between financial and spiritual goals in the pursuit of "freedom" and the fulfillment of the American dream. By drawing upon sources as varied as books, newspapers, magazines, television shows, movies, blogs, message boards, documentaries, public speeches, corporate training films, and employee newsletters, the author provides compelling insights into the range of competing values and ideals interwoven throughout office life.

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