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Eric Schlosser

Biography

Eric Schlosser is an American journalist and author. His most famous book to date is Fast Food Nation, a muckraking exposť on the practices of the fast food industry, especially focusing on its sanitary conditions and treatment of workers. Fast Food Nation evolved from a two-part article in Rolling Stone Magazine. He has also written Reefer Madness, a book about the three biggest sectors of the American black market: marijuana, migrant labor and pornography. As an aspiring playwright Schlosser wrote the play Americans in 1985. Though it deals with the theme of American imperialism at the beginning of the 20th century, the piece has been given new relevance by international events involving the US in recent years.

He was born in Manhattan, New York and spent his childhood there and in Los Angeles, California. He studied at Princeton (American History) and Oxford (British Imperial History). After working for a New York film company, he began a journalism career with Atlantic Monthly in Boston, Massachusetts. He now lives in Manhattan. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eric_Schlosser [Feb 2005]

Reefer Madness: Sex, Drugs, and Cheap Labor in the American Black Market (2003) - Eric Schlosser

  • Reefer Madness: Sex, Drugs, and Cheap Labor in the American Black Market - Eric Schlosser [FR] [DE] [UK]

    Reefer Madness: Sex, Drugs, and Cheap Labor in the American Black Market (2003) is a look behind the 10% underground economy of the U.S. that includes marijuana, migrant labor, and pornography. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reefer_Madness [Feb 2005]

    As much as 10% of the American economy, and perhaps more, is comprised of illegal "underground" enterprises, according to author and Atlantic Monthly correspondent Eric Schlosser. And while this segment is never discussed in the newspaper business pages, Schlosser tackles it with the same in-depth analysis and compulsive readability that made his Fast Food Nation a best seller. Reefer Madness spotlights marijuana, migrant labor, and pornography, three of the most thriving black market industries, and analyzes the often-tenuous place each holds in society as a whole. While each of the three could be the subject of its own book, Schlosser keeps his scope narrow by concentrating on the lives of the participants in the underground economy, especially Mark Young, an Indiana man given a life sentence for participating in a marijuana sale, and Ohio porn magnate Reuben Sturman. At just 21 pages, the treatment of migrant laborers in the California strawberry fields is dealt with more briefly but is just as compelling thanks to the first-person narrative of Schlosserís investigation. In telling these stories, which are both personal and universal, Schlosser deftly explores the manner in which his subjects are treated (and punished) compared to others in more above-ground ventures. Along the way, he asks hard questions as to what that treatment says about America. Schlosser writing is passionately opinionated, but this is no mere opinion piece: his perspective is amply supported by extensive research and clearly reasoned interpretation of data. His direct and forceful writing style makes the impact greater still. After reading Reefer Madness, readers are likely to be shocked, appalled, and flat-out bewildered by whatís happening in the cracks and crevices of American business. --John Moe, amazon.com

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