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Eviction erases the home: Losing shelter on the edge of American life.

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If incarceration has become typical in the lives of poor African American men, eviction has become typical in the lives of poor African American women. And these women in general, and mothers particularly, are bearing the cost of eviction. But this is also a problem that is very widespread - one in five of all renters in this country reports spending at least 50% of their income on housing.

Sociologist Matthew Desmond explores the increasingly precarious role of housing in Milwaukee's poorest neighborhoods, where low wages and high rents make eviction commonplace, and examines the ways in which eviction, like mass incarceration, destabilizes the economic stability and mental health of families already living on the margins of American life.

Matthew is author of Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City from Penguin Random House.

Interview transcript via Antidote Zine

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Guest

Matthew Desmond

Matthew Desmond is the John L. Loeb Associate Professor of the Social Sciences at Harvard University and codirector of the Justice and Poverty Project.

 

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