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FEATURING JOHN PATRICK LEARY – Anybody who is struggling with unemployment in the US today knows that acquiring a job means “marketing” oneself to companies that are hiring. Being open to “flexible” hours, engaging in “creative,” and “innovative,” thinking, and developing a “personal brand,” are all considered essential to finding a way to make ends meet.

Where did this glossy language originate? And what do the words obscure about the reality of today’s capitalist job market?

John Patrick Leary, Associate Professor of English at Wayne State University in Detroit. His earlier book is A Cultural History of Underdevelopment: Latin American in the US Imagination. His new book is called Keywords: The New Language of Capitalism.

**This segment was originally broadcast on January 31, 2019.

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