The Department of Labor Celebrates the ‘Books that Shaped Work in America’

wpa_poster work pays

Taking the lead from the successful  Books that Shaped America exhibition sponsored by the Library of Congress in 2012 the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL)  has come up with a great way to celebrate its centennial.

In partnership with the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress, it’s developing a list of Books that Shaped Work in America. To populate the list the DOL has asked all the former Labor Secretary’s to recommend their favorites.

wpa work with care

From Walt Whitman’s Leaves of Grass (1855) chosen by George P. Shultz, the 11th U.S. Secretary of Labor, to Barbara Ehrenreich’s Nickel and Dimed (2001) chosen by former Secretary Robert Reich to the work of Studs Terkel and the fiction of John Steinbeck,  the literature of America is very much a rich history of the working class.

And, if you don’t see a book that you think should be there you are welcome to suggest it for the list.



A  great idea and one that should create a pretty powerful reading list

Our Centennial – Books that Shaped Work in America.

All images from the WPA