Education: King's College, London, Ph.D.
Office—MARIAL Center, Emory University, Emory W. Ste. 413E, 1256 Briarcliff Rd., Atlanta, GA 30306; fax: 404-712-9250. E-mail—[email protected]
Academic. Emory Center for Myth and Ritual in American Life, Emory University, Atlanta, GA, postdoctoral research fellow, 2002—, director of special projects.
Drew Whitelegg is an academic. He earned a Ph.D. in urban studies from King's College, London. Whitelegg then accepted a position in 2002 as a postgraduate research fellow at Emory University's Emory Center for Myth and Ritual in American Life. He also serves as the center's director of special projects.
Whitelegg published his first book, Working the Skies: The Fast-Paced, Disorienting World of the Flight Attendant, in 2007. The account looks at the history of the profession of flight attendants through oral records and interviews. Whitelegg shows how airline schedules have a negative impact with flight attendants' families and personal lives outside work. Whitelegg analyzes how the terrorist attacks of September 11 drastically changed the responsibilities and procedures of those working onboard planes. He also shares stories of in-flight mishaps and quirks as well as what happens behind the scenes.
A contributor to the Midwest Book Review described the account as "an excellent, lively survey." The same contributor added that it is "a fine choice" for both business and public libraries. Booklist contributor Colleen Mondor suggested that the author might "overly sympathize" with flight attendants, but summarized that Working the Skies presents "a balanced inquiry." Mondor concluded that the stories Whitelegg conveys throughout the book "are rich enough to satisfy the most curious reader."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Booklist, June 1, 2007, Colleen Mondor, review of Working the Skies: The Fast-Paced, Disorienting World of the Flight Attendant, p. 12.
Midwest Book Review, January 1, 2008, review of Working the Skies.
Myth and Ritual in American Life, Emory Center, Emory University Web site,http://www.marial.emory.edu/ (May 21, 2008), author profile.