Not Working

The Pulse of the American Depression

The Book

Not Working: People Talk About Losing a Job and Finding Their Way in Today’s Changing Economy is available from Penguin. The author will be donating a portion of his personal proceeds to organizations dedicated to aiding the unemployed.

Print Edition

Barnes & Noble


Kindle from Amazon

“This is a powerful and heart-wrenching story…”
— Ken Burns

“With grace and compassion, DW Gibson’s “Not Working” brings us the stories of America’s disregarded. Through the book’s many voices, we get a detailed and harrowing, but utterly unsentimental sense of the lives of others. An intense, moving, ground-level history of our difficult times. ”            —Teju Cole

“The book gives a name and a face to what is often tossed around as a mere statistic.”
— New York Observer

“A touching and all-too-necessary text.”                                                                        Interview

“A book with fascinating range [and] a fresh perspective [that shows] how powerful the genre of oral history can be.”                                                              San Francisco Chronicle

“Wrenching . . . Wide-ranging . . . This book is so important.”                              —New York Daily News

Not Working…reveals something Americans only talk about in numbers.”     —Los Angeles Review of Books

“Comparable in heft and style to Studs Terkel’s WorkingNot Working is as timely as its predecessor. . . . [It] provides an in-depth look at a new type of American and reveals a new type of American story. . . . The storytellers in Not Working . . . show that, as a society, we’re more than where we work.”                                                                                                                             —City Arts (Seattle, WA)

“Add[s] faces, personalities and pathos to the unemployment figures thrown around every month. Just as [Studs] Terkel showed how so many of us define ourselves with our work, Gibson’s subjects demonstrate how, even beyond the financial havoc that ensues, losing a job unsettles a person’s sense of self.”                                                                                                      The Plain Dealer (Cleveland, OH)