The truly disadvantaged chapter summary

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the truly disadvantaged chapter summary

The Truly Disadvantaged: The Inner City, the Underclass, and Public Policy by William Julius Wilson

The Truly Disadvantaged should spur critical thinking in many quarters about the causes and possible remedies for inner city poverty. As policy makers grapple with the problems of an enlarged underclass they—as well as community leaders and all concerned Americans of all races—would be advised to examine Mr. Wilsons incisive analysis.—Robert Greenstein, New York Times Book Review

Must reading for civil-rights leaders, leaders of advocacy organizations for the poor, and for elected officials in our major urban centers.—Bernard C. Watson, Journal of Negro Education

Required reading for anyone, presidential candidate or private citizen, who really wants to address the growing plight of the black urban underclass.—David J. Garrow, Washington Post Book World

Selected by the editors of the New York Times Book Review as one of the sixteen best books of 1987.
Winner of the 1988 C. Wright Mills Award of the Society for the Study of Social Problems.
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Published 28.08.2019

The 2017 Wilson Lecture William Julius Wilson: Reflections on Race, Class and Cumulative Adversity


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The book relies almost entirely on preexisting research, much of which had sparked little controversy when it first appeared, as well as rather conventionally derived sets of demographic and socioeconomic data. Moreover, one of its most controversial positions—that black ghetto populations were stricken by a set of problems linked to debilitating patterns of behavior and family instabilities—had been a fixture of urban policy discourse since the publication of the Moynihan Report in This was a line of reasoning, many argued, that placed the blame for ghetto poverty on underclass blacks themselves rather than the forces of institutional racism that maintained the ghettos they lived in. Amplifying the potency of such messages, moreover, was the rather striking embrace of the book and its author by the academic establishment. Indeed, despite its largely derivative and inarguably modest scholarly labor, the American Sociological Association awarded TDSR its prestigious Sydney Spivack Award, thereby setting its author on the road to fame, power, and, by the standards of the academic profession, fortune. Shortly after the publication in of his next and no less pithily titled book, The Truly Disadvantaged , which sought to deepen the analysis of the ghetto underclass elaborated in TDSR and outline its policy implications, Wilson received the top honor available to scholars—the coveted and lucrative MacArthur Fellowship.

Dive deep into William Julius Wilson's The Truly Disadvantaged with extended Wilson notes that “46 percent of black children under eighteen years of age.
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The Inner City, the Underclass, and Public Policy, Second Edition

Renowned American sociologist William Julius Wilson takes a look at the social transformation of inner city ghettos, offering a sharp evaluation of the convergence of race and poverty. Rejecting both conservative and liberal interpretations of life in the inner city, Wilson offers essential information and a number of solutions to policymakers. The Truly Disadvantaged is a wide-ranging examination, looking at the relationship between race, employment, and education from the s onwards, with surprising and provocative findings. This second edition also includes a new afterword from Wilson himself that brings the book up to date and offers fresh insight into its findings. As policymakers grapple with the problems of an enlarged underclass they—as well as community leaders and all concerned Americans of all races—would be advised to examine Mr. Wilson's incisive analysis.

Alice P. William Julius Wilson. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, A young college graduate writes to Ann Landers, puzzled by deteriorating conditions in the inner city - skyrocketing out-of-wedlock births, drug and alcohol addictions, crime, and welfare dependency. She's concerned, but expresses hope, "I don't believe that my generation is apathetic. We just don't know where to start. The Truly Disadvantaged uses an extensive research analysis to support improvement for the life chances of the underclass through universal programs.


  1. Angie C. says:

    The book was first published in ; a second edition was published in

  2. Neal P. says:

    Against The Declining Significance of Race

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