Ordinary Poverty: A Little Food and Cold Storage

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Temple University Press, 2006 - Social Science - 220 pages
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At St. John's Bread and Life, a soup ktichen in the Bedford-Stuyvesant section of Brooklyn, over a thousand people line up for food five days a week. In this trenchant and groundbreaking work, author Bill DiFazio breathes life into the stories of the poor who have, in the wake of welfare reform and neoliberal retreats from the caring state, now become a permanent part of our everyday life. No longer is poverty a "war" to be won, as DiFazio laments. In a mixture of storytelling and analysis, DiFazio takes the reader through the years before and after welfare reform to show how poverty has become "ordinary," a fact of life to millions of Americans and to the thousands of social workers, volunteers and everyday citizens who still think poverty ought to be eradicated. Arguing that only a true program of living wages, rather than permanent employment, is the solution to poverty, DiFazio also argues a case for a true poor people's movement that links the interests of all social movements with the interests of ending poverty.

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About the author (2006)

William DiFazio is Professor of Sociology at St. John's University. He is the author of Longshoremen: Community and Resistance on the Brooklyn Waterfront and co-author (with Stanley Aronowitz) of The Jobless Future: Sci-Tech and the Dogma of Work.

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