A central part of the American Dream is the 40 hour workweek. You graduate from college and get a standard 9-5 job. You punch in, do your job, and then go home at the end of the day to spend a restful evening with friends and family. After 30 years of working the 9-5, you retire and spend your days playing golf or hiking or puttering around in your garden.
This process is embedded deeply into American folklore. Immigrants come to United States and are willing to work excruciating hours so that their children might be able to only work 40 hours per week. The country band “Alabama” performed a song entitled “40 Hour Week (For A Livin’)”, which was a salute to America’s blue-collar workers. The song included the stirring words:
Hello Detroit auto workers, let me thank you for your time
You work a forty hour week …