Michele Lamont takes us into the world inhabited by working-class men--the world as they understand it. Interviewing black and white working-class men who, because they are not college graduates, have limited access to high-paying jobs and other social benefits, she constructs a revealing portrait of how they see themselves and the rest of society. Morality is at the center of these workers' worlds. They find their identity and self-worth in their ability to discipline themselves and conduct responsible but caring lives. These moral standards function as an alternative to economic definitions of success, offering them a way to maintain dignity in an out-of-reach American dreamland. But these standards also enable them to draw class boundaries toward the poor and, to a lesser extent, the upper half. Workers also draw rigid racial boundaries, with white workers placing emphasis on the "e;disciplined self"e; and blacks on the "e;caring self."e; Whites thereby often construe blacks as morally inferior because they are lazy, while blacks depict whites as domineering, uncaring, and overly disciplined. This book also opens up a wider perspective by examining American workers in comparison with French workers, who take the poor as "e;part of us"e; and are far less critical of blacks than they are of upper-middle-class people and immigrants. By singling out different "e;moral offenders"e; in the two societies, workers reveal contrasting definitions of "e;cultural membership"e; that help us understand and challenge the forms of inequality found in both societies.