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Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American…
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Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City

by Matthew Desmond

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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1,2521299,251 (4.41)1 / 331
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English (129)  Piratical (1)  All languages (130)
Showing 1-5 of 129 (next | show all)
Books like this should be required reading for social workers, law enforcement, judges, clerk of courts offices, defense attorneys, teachers, nurses, pastors, landlord associations, etc and so on..... ( )
  BGraff69 | Oct 8, 2018 |
A wonderful book that stands next to "Nickel and Dimed" and "The New Jim Crow" by providing a personal and well-researched account of housing in America. All the other reviews can tell you how heart-wrenching the stories are and how the details are well-placed so I won't repeat. This book shows the case for more comprehensive social insurance programs and makes a solid case in the final chapter about what we have let our country become and how we are not just ignoring those that are poor, but actively working to make them poorer, especially by telling ourselves that we deserve more than they do. On a policy and personal level, it's a crucial hit. ( )
  mmaestiho | Sep 20, 2018 |
Compelling narratives about the power asymmetry between those living in poverty and the landlords who profit from them, backed by comprehensive research and footnotes. ( )
  spuddybuddy | Sep 9, 2018 |
In a very real way Mr. Desmond makes real the impossible situations poor families and individuals find themselves in when it comes to finding and keeping a place to live. The picture he paints of the terrible housing that exists, the ways in which getting and keeping housing impacts the ability to work, to go to school, to do anything to better one's circumstances is a bleak one. I had a hard time reading this. ( )
  tjsjohanna | Sep 6, 2018 |
When I first started reading Evicted I was a little concerned, thinking my background in real estate would impede my judgment, and I'd come out with an extremely biased review. The introduction gave me the impression that there would be a variety of stories contained in the book however, I did feel there was nothing unexpected. I struggle to admit I didn't have much empathy for most of the people, however, I abhor the condition of the homes they lived in.

This might not be the best book for me to review but I picked it up because I recently started working at a small company in real estate development which helps with low-income housing and I was looking to gain a better understanding of the reality but also because this was one of Goodreads 2016 Nonfiction nominees. While I do feel the stories in the book were what one would expect I also feel Matthew did a wonderful job of keeping me engaged enough to get through the book to bring me to the conclusion.

What I need to take into consideration is that in '09 Milwaukee had the 4th highest poverty rate in the US for major cities. The year prior they ranked at 11 which is still high on the list. I need to not look at this book in a way to nitpick the details but to take this in as a big picture economic and social issue. The reality is that the real estate aspect of these stories is just the result of a bigger issue in play.

The final part of the book, Matthew takes the time to not only ask questions but give at least partial solutions to the issues in play and how he thinks it will change things. He and I may have some conflicting thoughts, or perhaps I have questions not answered, I do agree changes need to be made and I am thankful he took the time to write this book and feel everyone should take the time to read this.



Note: I'd like to say more but I feel like it might ruin the experience of the book if you decide to pick it up. ...and I want to prevent myself from hopping up on a soapbox. If you do pick this up, please reach out! I'd love to have a conversation more in depth. ( )
  Kylana | Aug 13, 2018 |
Showing 1-5 of 129 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (1 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Matthew Desmondprimary authorall editionscalculated
Graham, DionNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
I wish the rent
was heaven sent.
 Langston Hughes,
 "Little Lyric (Of Great Importance)"
Dedication
For Michelle, who's been down the line
First words
Jori and his cousin were cutting up, tossing snowballs at passing cars.
Quotations
If incarceration had come to define the lives of men from impoverished black neighborhoods, eviction was shaping the lives of women. Poor black men were locked up.  Poor black women were locked out.
No one thought the poor more undeserving than the poor themselves.
A community that saw so clearly it's own pain had a difficult time also sensing its potential.
What the chief failed to realize, or failed to reveal, was that his department's own rules presented battered women with the devil's bargain: keep quiet and face abuse or call the police and face eviction.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0553447432, Hardcover)

From Harvard sociologist Matthew Desmond, a landmark work of scholarship and reportage that will forever change the way we look at poverty in America
 
In this brilliant, heartbreaking book, Matthew Desmond takes us into the poorest neighborhoods of Milwaukee to tell the story of eight families on the edge. Arleen is a single mother trying to raise her two sons on the $20 a month she has left after paying for their rundown apartment. Scott is a gentle nurse consumed by a heroin addiction. Lamar, a man with no legs and a neighborhood full of boys to look after, tries to work his way out of debt. Vanetta participates in a botched stick up after her hours are cut. All are spending almost everything they have on rent, and all have fallen behind.
 
The fate of these families is in the hands of two landlords: Sherrena Tarver, a former school teacher turned inner-city entrepreneur, and Tobin Charney, who runs the worst trailer park in the fourth poorest city in the country. They loathe some of their tenants and are fond of others, but as Sherrena puts it, “Love don’t pay the bills.” She moves to evict Arleen and her boys a few days before Christmas.
 
Even in the most desolate areas of American cities, evictions used to be rare. But today, most poor renting families are spending over half of their income on housing, and eviction has become ordinary, especially for single mothers. In vivid, intimate prose, Desmond provides a ground-level view of one of the most urgent issues facing America today. As we see families forced into shelters, squalid apartments, or more dangerous neighborhoods, we bear witness to the human cost of America’s vast inequality—and to people’s determination and intelligence in the face of hardship.
 
Based on years of embedded fieldwork and painstakingly gathered data, this masterful book transforms our understanding of extreme poverty and economic exploitation, while providing fresh ideas for solving a devastating, uniquely American problem. Its unforgettable scenes of hope and loss remind us of the centrality of home, without which nothing else is possible.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 17 Sep 2015 18:44:44 -0400)

"[The author] takes us into the poorest neighborhoods of Milwaukee to tell the story of eight families on the edge. Arleen is a single mother trying to raise her two sons on the 20 dollars a month she has left after paying for their rundown apartment. Scott is a gentle nurse consumed by a heroin addiction. Lamar, a man with no legs and a neighborhood full of boys to look after, tries to work his way out of debt. Vanetta participates in a botched stickup after her hours are cut. All are spending almost everything they have on rent, and all have fallen behind. The fates of these families are in the hands of two landlords: Sherrena Tarver, a former schoolteacher turned inner-city entrepreneur, and Tobin Charney, who runs one of the worst trailer parks in Milwaukee. They loathe some of their tenants and are fond of others, but as Sherrena puts it, "Love don't pay the bills." She moves to evict Arleen and her boys a few days before Christmas. Even in the most desolate areas of American cities, evictions used to be rare. But today, most poor renting families are spending more than half of their income on housing, and eviction has become ordinary, especially for single mothers. In vivid, intimate prose, Desmond provides a ground-level view of one of the most urgent issues facing America today. As we see families forced into shelters, squalid apartments, or more dangerous neighborhoods, we bear witness to the human cost of America's vast inequality-- and to people's determination and intelligence in the face of hardship. Based on years of embedded fieldwork and painstakingly gathered data, this masterful book transforms our understanding of extreme poverty and economic exploitation while providing fresh ideas for solving a devastating, uniquely American problem. Its unforgettable scenes of hope and loss remind us of the centrality of home, without which nothing else is possible"--Amazon.com.… (more)

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