The Wage Slave's Glossary

Joshua Glenn (Author) (Pseud) Seth (Illustrator)
& 1 more
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Everybody knows a brown-noser when they see one. But how about a freeter? A workbrickle? A jack? Can they tell downsizing from greybearding or brightsizing?

With The Idler's Glossary (2008), Mark Kingwell and Joshua Glenn offered a spirited defense of leisure. As confirmed idlers themselves, they assured us their Glossary could provide "everything you need to know about how to conduct a life." Today, however, as we recover from the worst global recession since 1929, the work-world is a very different place. In order to understand it better, our anti-capitalist etymologists are therefore putting down their cigars, picking up their shovels, and drudging out English from the ditch of corporate jargon. For anyone who's ever had to moil for high muckety-mucks, The Wage Slave's Glossary is essential reading--as the moral wit of Kingwell & Glenn is indispensable to the present age.

Product Details

$11.95  $10.99
Publish Date
September 20, 2011
4.24 X 0.53 X 6.45 inches | 0.27 pounds

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About the Author

Joshua Glenn: Joshua Glenn is a Boston-based journalist and scholar. He has labored as a bicycle shop manager and skateboard courier, a busboy and barrel-washer, a researcher and teacher, a handyman and house painter, a bartender and espresso jerk, and also as a magazine and newspaper editor. He lives in Boston.

Mark Kingwell: After some years of graduate studies in Britain and the United States, Mark Kingwell found he had inadvertently perfected a form of idling for which he could get paid. He is Professor of Philosophy at the University of Toronto, a contributing editor of Harper's Magazine, including the author of fifteen books.

(Pseud) Seth: Seth is the cartoonist behind the painfully infrequent comic book series Palookaville. His books include It's a Good Life if You Don't Weaken, Wimbledon Green, Bannock, Beans and Black Tea, and Clyde Fans Book One. His books have been translated into five languages.


"A tiny, lovely book, beautifully designed and illustrated by Seth, delightful to pick up and hold in your hand"--Geist

"Exhausted demonstrators looking for the lightest reading they can find, at least in the literal sense, might want to pick up Joshua Glenn and Mark Kingwell's "Wage Slave's Glossary," a nifty pocket-size volume also spotted on the shelves in Zuccotti Park. A follow-up to the authors' "Idler's Glossary," the book provides energized Marxists and depressed Dilberts alike a witty guide to terms like "air family" (the false sense of community among co-workers), "afternoon farmer" (19th-century slang for someone who wastes the entiremorning), "keeping up with the Joneses" (the title of a popular cartoon that first appeared in 1913) and "on the wallaby" (Australian for "tramping the country on foot, looking for work"), not to mention more self-explanatory terms. ("Bossnapping," anyone?)"
--New York Times

"A fun dictionary of modern office idioms and new economy jargon."
--The Atlantic

"A wry brand of enlightenment ... a pocket-sized guide to the terms of paid labor."
--Boston Globe

"A light-serious compilation against capitalism run amok."
--Globe & Mail

"The Wage Slave's Glossary is a grand and saddening tour of language past and present ... a labor of love, and worth your money and time."-- Michael LeddyOrange Crate Art