More House Than They Could Afford: The Cumulative Civic Implications of Housing Markets and Policies



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Cold hard facts, statistics and data are woven with personal narratives from public housing tenants and former homeowners. Both the author and her research subjects present a historical and personally intimate framework (both national and regional) for understanding how housing impacts one's civic standing. Why are public housing tenants often denied their second amendment right to bear arms, even though they go through rigorous background checks that homeowners do not? Why do public housing tenants have less legal recourse to challenge poor conditions compared to renters in the private market? Why were homeowners of color funneled into sub-prime loans even when they qualified for prime ones? This thesis looks at correlations and divergences between the foreclosure crisis, the demolition of public housing and the reduction of shelter benefits for homeless families, continuously begging the question -how does your housing narrative impact the substance of your citizenship.



public housing, foreclosure, urban politics, mortgage crisis, housing crisis, economic justice