The Urban Underclass

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Christopher Jencks, Paul E. Peterson
Brookings Institution Press, Aug 9, 2001 - Social Science - 490 pages
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Many believe that the urban underclass in America is a large, rapidly increasing proportion of the population; that crime, teenage pregnancy, and high school dropout rates are escalating; and that welfare rolls are exploding. Yet none of these perceptions is accurate. Here, noted authorities, including William J. Wilson, attempt to separate the truth about poverty, social dislocation, and changes in American family life from the myths that have become part of contemporary folklore.

  

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Contents

The Urban Underclass and the Poverty Paradox
3
Is the American Underclass Growing?
28
Employment and Earnings of Disadvantaged Young Men in a Labor Shortage Economy
103
Gains from Growth? The Impact of Full Employment on Poverty in Boston
122
Labor Force Activity in Chicagos Inner City
135
Have the Rules Changed?
155
Socioeconomic Change and the Decline of Marriage for Blacks and Whites
175
The Meaning of Race for Employers
203
How Much Does a High Schools Racial and Socioeconomic Mix Affect Graduation and Teenage Fertility Rates?
321
Employment and Earnings of LowIncome Blacks Who Move to MiddleClass Suburbs
342
The Political Behavior of Poor People
357
Neighborhood Effects on Teenage Pregnancy
375
Culture Rationality and the Underclass
399
Politically Viable Policies to Combat Poverty in the United States
411
An Alternative View
437
Public Policy Research and The Truly Disadvantaged
460

Ghetto Poverty in the United States 19701980
235
Residential Segregation of Social and Economic Groups among Blacks 197080
274
Effects of Neighborhoods on Dropping Out of School and Teenage Childbearing
299

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Page 478 - Accordingly, the hidden agenda for liberal policymakers is to improve the life chances of truly disadvantaged groups such as the ghetto underclass by emphasizing programs to which the more advantaged groups of all races and class backgrounds can positively relate.

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About the author (2001)

Christopher Jencks is the Malcolm Wiener Professor of Social Policy at Harvard's John F. Kennedy School of Government, the author of The Homeless(Harvard, 1994) and Rethinking Social Policy: Race, Poverty, and the Underclass(Harperperennial, 1993), and the coeditor of The Urban Underclass(Brookings, 1991). Paul E. Petersonis the Henry Lee Shattuck Professor of Government at Harvard, the director of PEPG, and a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution. He is author or editor of numerous books, including The Education Gap: Vouchers and Urban Schools, with William G. Howell (Brookings, 2004 and 2006). He is coeditor (with Martin West) of No Child Left Behind? The Practice and Politics of School Accountability(Brookings, 2003).

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