The idea was simple: pack a suitcase, go to another city where you have no connections and try to find a job, anonymously. That was the idea that took Florence Aubenas - one of France's most
accomplished undercover journalists - on a journey into the worst recession since the Great Depression.
Day after day she searched for work, one unemployed worker among others, with no special skills or qualifications. She immersed herself in the crowd of job seekers, going from one employment office toanother, eventually managing to cobble together a few hours working as a night cleaner on a ferry that crossed the English Channel.
For many people the global financial crisis seems real enough but remote from their daily lives. They have little sense of what it really means to be unemployed in the midst of a recession. Florence Aubenas was determined to find out. This book is the story of herjourney.
The Night Cleaner became an instant number one bestseller in France and has subsequently become a bestseller in many countries throughout the world. Better than any academic treatise on the topic, this book shows what recession means today.
Florence Aubenas has worked as a journalist for over 20 years for Liberation and the Nouvel Observateur. She has visited war zones, police stations, courts and factories on strike in the course of her reporting. In 2005 she was kidnapped by insurgents in Iraq and held hostage along with her interpreter, making front-page news worldwide. She emerged 157 says later unscathed.