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American Project : Rise and Fall of a Modern Ghetto

American Project : Rise and Fall of a Modern Ghetto - 00 edition

ISBN13: 978-0674008304

Cover of American Project : Rise and Fall of a Modern Ghetto 00 (ISBN 978-0674008304)
ISBN13: 978-0674008304
ISBN10: 0674008308
Cover type: Paperback
Edition/Copyright: 00
Publisher: Harvard University Press
Published: 2000
International: No

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American Project : Rise and Fall of a Modern Ghetto - 00 edition

ISBN13: 978-0674008304

Sudhir Alladi Venkatesh

ISBN13: 978-0674008304
ISBN10: 0674008308
Cover type: Paperback
Edition/Copyright: 00
Publisher: Harvard University Press

Published: 2000
International: No
Summary

High-rise public housing developments were signature features of the postÐWorld War II city. A hopeful experiment in providing temporary, inexpensive housing for all Americans, the "projects" soon became synonymous with the black urban poor, with isolation and overcrowding, with drugs, gang violence, and neglect. As the wrecking ball brings down some of these concrete monoliths, Sudhir Venkatesh seeks to reexamine public housing from the inside out, and to salvage its troubled legacy. Based on nearly a decade of fieldwork in Chicago's Robert Taylor Homes, American Project is the first comprehensive story of daily life in an American public housing complex. Venkatesh draws on his relationships with tenants, gang members, police officers, and local organizations to offer an intimate portrait of an inner-city community that journalists and the public have only viewed from a distance. Challenging the conventional notion of public housing as a failure, this startling book re-creates tenants' thirty-year effort to build a safe and secure neighborhood: their political battles for services from an indifferent city bureaucracy, their daily confrontation with entrenched poverty, their painful decisions about whether to work with or against the street gangs whose drug dealing both sustained and imperiled their lives. American Project explores the fundamental question of what makes a community viable. In his chronicle of tenants' political and personal struggles to create a decent place to live, Venkatesh brings us to the heart of the matter.

Table of Contents

Foreword
Preface
Introduction

1. A Place to Call Home
2. Doing the Hustle
3. "What's It Like to Be in Hell?"
4. Tenants Face Off with the Gang
5. Street-Gang Diplomacy
6. The Beginning of the End of a Modern Ghetto

Author's Note
Notes
Acknowledgments
Index

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