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“Working at McDonald’s” by Amitai Etzioni

In his article “Working at McDonald’s”, Amitai Etzioni argues that American teenagers face a number of problems in their lives in case they decide to take a part-time job. The author uses the example of McDonald’s chain as a pioneer in the field of employing young people who are still at school to show how harmful may be the early working experience for children when they are at the stage of acquiring their basic education. Etzioni explains his logic by means of discussing a number of bad consequences that children may have if they try to combine their school studies and a part time job in a fast food business. In particular, he makes emphasis the fact that children become destructed, they lose their focus on doing their home tasks, change their opinion regarding the importance of visiting classes, and at the same time, they do not obtain the useful skills that might benefit them in their adulthood while working in fast food restaurants. Being motivated by such concerns, the author mentions a number of reasons why teenagers should stop combining their studies with part time work in fast food chains.

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Critically reflecting on Etzioni’s argument in his article, it is important to note that in general, it may be evaluated as having good logic and coherence. In particular, it is easy to follow the author’s way of reasoning from the very beginning of the article, where he establishes the main issue of his argument, to its very end, where he shows that children are harmed by working in fast food chains as they develop a wrong way thinking that responsibilities in school may be avoided, and money is rather easy to receive. Etzioni supports his argument with a number of trustworthy facts from real life, and explains how exactly having an early job in the field of fast food business may affect children’s way of thinking. In addition, he makes many connections with the findings of modern sociologists, who explain that highly routinized jobs at early age ruin children’s intellectual potential, and stop their development.

In his article, Etzioni resorts to the use of the reviewing study design, which adds to the reliability of his conclusions. The findings of the article are based on reviewing thematic literature on this issue. In general, more than ten different sources by different specialists on the sociology of employment are reviewed in this article in order to develop unbiased vision of the real consequences of early job placement for teenagers. These sources belong to different periods of time beginning from the 1980s and ending with the 2000s, which presents a considerable basis for making reliable conclusions by the author of the article. Besides, Etzioni applies a number of research methods including literature reviews, meta-analyses, and systematic reviews. He uses different types of academic sources. Such a considerable area of research assists the author in understanding the phenomenon of early employment in a routinized area in a detailed way. This makes his findings especially valuable for those who have faced the necessity of making their decision regarding the appropriateness of spending their precious time, which may be used on educational needs, for making fast food money while at school.

Evaluating Etzioni’s emotional implications, it is important to state that significant cases of manipulation and dramatizing are not noticed in the paper. On the contrary, during the major part of the argument, the author appeals to his audience’s logic and sanity. Moreover, no cases of scary stories, doomsday-type imaginative scenarios, over-the-top emotionally-laden arguments are noticed. Thus, the argument of the article can be seen as sober-minded and reasonable. However, some facts appear exaggerated, in a way. For example, when the author reasons the results of Charper’s and Fraser’s findings in their research regarding the possibility of acquiring valuable skills by employees of fast food cafes, he makes precipitated conclusions that are based on nothing more than his own vision of the subject matter.

As a final point, it should be concluded that Etzioni’s article can be seen as trustworthy and veracious because it is in full accord with the findings of the other remarkable sociologists who explore the consequences of early employment for school children. In this vein, Bauman is also concerned by the fact that a number of research studies, that have been recently conducted in the United States, indicate that more than 40% of children, who decide to be employed in the school, fail in finding a deserving job in the future whereas those, who invests their precious time into getting a good education, find themselves employed and better settled in their adult lives. Besides, Bauman and his supporters explain that the final years in school offer teenagers an opportunity to gain skills that are critically important for continuing their educaducation in higher establishments; therefore, if young people miss their studies at school, and are not able to dedicate enough time for doing their home tasks, their chances for a better life in future are reduced.

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"“Working at McDonald’s” by Amitai Etzioni." StudyCorgi, 3 Jan. 2022,

1. StudyCorgi. "“Working at McDonald’s” by Amitai Etzioni." January 3, 2022.


StudyCorgi. "“Working at McDonald’s” by Amitai Etzioni." January 3, 2022.


StudyCorgi. 2022. "“Working at McDonald’s” by Amitai Etzioni." January 3, 2022.


StudyCorgi. (2022) '“Working at McDonald’s” by Amitai Etzioni'. 3 January.

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