Tuesday, 3/26/2024
7:00 - 8:00

We discuss SFPL’s On the Same Page selection for March/April 2024., Matthew Desmond's, Poverty, by America.

Poverty, by America is Matthew Desmond's latest work, a follow-up to his Pulitzer Prize-winning Evicted, in which he examines the paradox of the United States being the richest country on earth while grappling with unparalleled poverty. Desmond contends that the persistence of poverty is fueled by a system benefiting from the exploitation of workers, discouragement of unions, overcharging of poor consumers and the unequal distribution of federal aid. He explores the entrenchment of poverty through underfunding in education, mass transit and healthcare, resulting in a society marked by private opulence and public squalor. Desmond's solutions advocate for the elimination of residential segregation, acknowledging complicity in perpetuating poverty and a call for an aggressive antipoverty agenda. The book serves as a poignant reflection on America's stark inequality, issuing a gut-wrenching call for change.  

Matthew Desmond continues his impactful sociological analysis, urging readers to confront their role in perpetuating poverty and pressuring the government for comprehensive antipoverty reforms. He is a professor of sociology at Princeton University, a contributing writer for The New York Times Magazine, and the author of Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City (2016). Desmond was also listed among the 2016 Politico 50 as one of “fifty people across the country who are most influencing the national political debate.”