Into the Fire

Topics: McDonaldization, Quaker Oats Company, McDonald's Pages: 4 (1299 words) Published: February 28, 2011
Arlie Russell Hochschild is a Professor of Sociology at the University of California, Berkeley. Hochschild’s interests of research are in the impact of contemporary capitalism on everyday life. In the essay she wrote, “From the Frying Pan into the Fire”, Hochschild argues the growing emphasis on efficiency is affecting our lives. We have allowed the idea of workplace efficiency to infiltrate within the home life, in significant and negative ways. Hochschild’s study of the influence of efficiency directly applies to other aspects of life, such as the way we eat food, communication, education and vacation. In America, we constantly on the go; dropping off the kids at school, going to work, picking up the kids from school, running errands, dropping of the kids at soccer, dance or swimming, going to the super market, pick up the kids, and going back home. With so little time in our day we take for granted things like eating, thus we tend to look for food that can be given to us quickly and efficiently. Efficiency is the ability to accomplish a job with a minimum expenditure of time and effort. In the essay “From the Frying Pan into the Fire”, the author mentioned about an advertisement for Quaker Oats cereal in an issue of Working Mothers magazine. The advertisement provides the application of influence of efficiency to private time at home. In the ad it said “Instant Quaker Oatmeal, for moms who have a lot of love but no a lot of time.” So the mother faces a dilemma; the need to meet her work schedule and the need to feed her child quickly. However, to be a good mother is to give the child a hot meal, which is associated with the devotion and love a mother wants to show their child. The ad suggests that the Instant Quaker Oatmeal is the solution to this everyday problem. It conveys love because it is hot but permits efficiency because it was made quickly; showing that even time spent feeding a child not only needs to be loving but also efficient. Since...
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