EVICTED—Poverty And Profit In The American City

Friday, August 11, 2017

Poverty And Profit 
In The American City
By Matthew Desmond

OVERVIEW: In Evicted, Harvard sociologist and MacArthur "Genius" Matthew Desmond follows eight families in Milwaukee as they each struggle to keep a roof over their heads. Hailed as "wrenching and revelatory" (The Nation), "vivid and unsettling" (New York Review of Books). Evicted transforms our understanding of poverty and economic exploitation while providing fresh ideas for solving one of twenty-first-century America's most devastating problems. Its unforgettable scenes of hope and loss remind us of the centrality of home, without which nothing else is possible.

AUTHOR: Matthew Desmond is the John L. Loeb Associate Professor of the Social Sciences at Harvard University and co-director of the Justice and Poverty Project. A former member of the Harvard Society of Fellows, he is the author the award-winning book On the Fireline, coauthor of two books on race, and editor of a collection of studies on severe deprivation in America. His work has been supported by the Ford, Russell Sage, and National Science Foundations, and his writing has appeared in the New York Times and Chicago Tribune. In 2015, Desmond was awarded a MacArthur "Genius" grant.

MY REVIEW: This New York Times Bestseller has been named one of the best books of the year by many reviewers. I agree. Pamela Paul, editor of the New York Times Book Review wrote, "It doesn't happen every week (or every month, or even year), but every once in a while a book comes along that changes the national conversation...Evicted looks to be one of those books." At the front of the book there are forty-five brief, and some not so brief, comments from important writers and publications praising the book and author.

This book is well written and reads like a novel. I agree with author Rebecca Skloot who said, "Evicted is astonishing—a master piece of writing and research that fills a tremendous gap in our understanding of poverty." I was born in 1934 and grew up in this kind of poverty. I am now eighty-two and this is the first time I have read or heard of this kind of in-depth study.

The Epilogue, Home And Hope, offers some answers to this part of the poverty problem. They are Matthew Desmond's answers and you may not agree with all of them. But if you are interested or concerned with this problem—this is the book you need to read.

(I received this book from Blogging For Books in exchange for a fair and honest review.)