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The greatest of evils : urban poverty and the American underclass

Author: Joel A Devine; James D Wright
Publisher: New York : A. de Gruyter, ©1993.
Series: Social institutions and social change.
Edition/Format:   eBook : Document : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
The debate on persisting poverty in the United States, somewhat dampened for the past decade, has now been fully rekindled. Devine and Wright have entered that debate with an analysis that is both quantitative and qualitative, informed on the one side by urban ethnography and steeped in official statistics and relevant data on the other. The result is an incisive and cogently documented narrative account leading to  Read more...
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Material Type: Document, Internet resource
Document Type: Internet Resource, Computer File
All Authors / Contributors: Joel A Devine; James D Wright
OCLC Number: 1040001223
Description: 1 online resource (xxvii, 236 pages : illustrations)
Contents: Introduction: Poverty, Misery, and Waste --
1. The Definition and Measurement of Poverty --
2. Poverty Then and Now: What's Different, What's the Same? --
3. The Contemporary Demography of Poverty --
4. Who and What Is the Urban Underclass? --
5. The Persistence of Poverty --
6. The Inner Logic of the Underclass --
7. An Agenda for the Future.
Series Title: Social institutions and social change.
Responsibility: Joel A. Devine and James D. Wright.

Abstract:

The debate on persisting poverty in the United States, somewhat dampened for the past decade, has now been fully rekindled. Devine and Wright have entered that debate with an analysis that is both quantitative and qualitative, informed on the one side by urban ethnography and steeped in official statistics and relevant data on the other. The result is an incisive and cogently documented narrative account leading to policy recommendations for a new president and a new era. In The Greatest of Evils, Devine and Wright develop three principal themes. First they argue that poverty is by no means monolithic: each subgroup within the population in poverty tends to have different problems. Secondly, the so-called "underclass" within the poverty population represents a new and especially corrosive development, one that cannot be analyzed in traditional terms nor dealt with in traditions ways. Thirdly, the War on Poverty of the Sixties was not the unmitigated disaster that so many have come to believe, and offered a boldness of vision that today's poverty policies tend to lack. In exploring these themes, the authors show how the social and economic costs of poverty-related problems exceed what it will cost to find remedies that address the underlying causes of residual poverty.

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