Entrepreneurs and the Search for the American Dream: 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Entrepreneurs and the Search for the American Dream

1st Edition

By Zulema Valdez


62 pages | 1 B/W Illus.

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The book's central focus explores several "myths" associated with American entrepreneurship: the idea that small business owners are "job creators"; that entrepreneurs are the "backbone" or "engine" of the economy; that entrepreneurship provides a path of economic mobility for immigrants, ethnic and racial minorities, and women; that the Horatio Algiers "rags to riches" story is possible for anyone willing to work hard. Instead, I provide a critical perspective that challenges these myths of American enterprise, arguing that successful entrepreneurship requires access to social and economic capital resources and support that are often distributed along the lines of race, class, and gender in the highly stratified American economy and society.

Table of Contents

Series Forward Preface Acknowledgements I. Who is an Entrepreneur and What is Entrepreneurship? II. Entrepreneurs Striving for the American Dream III. Are American Entrepreneurs as Diverse as We Think? Understanding Trends and Group Differences IV. Joe the Plumber and the Myth of New Small Businesses as "Job Creators" V. The False-Positive Claim: Recessions Stimulate Entrepreneurship VI. Conclusion Bibliography Glossary/Index

About the Author

Zulema Valdez is Associate Professor of Sociology at the University of California, Merced. Her interests include intersectionality, Latino/a Sociology, and social inequality. She is the author of The New Entrepreneurs: How Race, Class and Gender Shape American Enterprise (Stanford, 2011).

About the Series

Framing 21st Century Social Issues

The goal of this new, unique Series is to offer readable, teachable "thinking frames" on today’s social problems and social issues by leading scholars, all in short 60 page or shorter formats, and available for view on http://routledge.customgateway.com/routledge-social-issues.html

For instructors teaching a wide range of courses in the social sciences, the Routledge Social Issues Collection now offers the best of both worlds: originally written short texts that provide "overviews" to important social issues as well as teachable excerpts from larger works previously published by Routledge and other presses.

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Sociology / General