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Abandoned in the HeartlandWork, Family, and Living in East St. Louis$
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Jennifer Hamer

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780520269316

Published to California Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520269316.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM CALIFORNIA SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.california.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of California Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CALSO for personal use.date: 18 May 2022

The Cost of Abandonment

The Cost of Abandonment

(p.180) Chapter Seven The Cost of Abandonment
Abandoned in the Heartland

Jennifer F. Hamer

University of California Press

Today, in the metropolitan-area small cities, African Americans are more likely than whites to live in poverty, to experience a high rate of school dropouts, and to be incarcerated. At a later point in the twenty-first century, a clear majority of African Americans will be living in the suburbs, not in either rural areas or inner cities. The experiences of those in East St. Louis report that there is nothing particularly romantic about the deprivations of working-class suburban life in this space or place, especially for those at the outermost socioeconomic margins. The hallmarks of suburban living were being threatened by a global economic crisis, but working-class suburbanites in East St. Louis have been feeling the pinch for a long time. Without fixes of the problems at the root level, the spiral of distress and abandonment will continue.

Keywords:   distress, abandonment, African Americans, East St. Louis, suburban living, global economic crisis

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