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Longing for the BombOak Ridge and Atomic Nostalgia$
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Lindsey A. Freeman

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9781469622378

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: January 2016

DOI: 10.5149/northcarolina/9781469622378.001.0001

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At Work in the Atomic Beehive

At Work in the Atomic Beehive

(p.61) Chapter Three At Work in the Atomic Beehive
Longing for the Bomb

Lindsey A. Freeman

University of North Carolina Press

This chapter discusses atomic fordism—the systematic compartmentalization of work for the Manhattan Project. The system stretched across the country with the nation’s major highways functioning as a conveyor belt of nuclear knowledge, nuclear secrets, and fissionable uranium and plutonium. In this systematic production, each worker according to each site was responsible for a very specific part of the process and was often required to perform a set of repetitive, monotonous tasks. The purpose of separation in atomic fordism was for speed and efficiency just as in Henry Ford’s organization, but with the added understanding that this way of working would aid in the Project’s desire to prevent the flow of information.

Keywords:   atomic fordism, Manhattan Project, monotonous tasks, Henry Ford, nuclear knowledge, nuclear secrets

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