Even in the most desolate areas of American cities, evictions used to be rare. But today, most poor renting families are spending more than half of their income on housing, and eviction has become ordinary, especially for single mothers. In vivid, intimate prose, author Matthew Desmond provides a ground-level view of one of the most urgent issues facing America today in his book Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City. As we see families forced into shelters, squalid apartments, or more dangerous neighborhoods, we bear witness to the human cost of America’s vast inequality—and to people’s determination and intelligence in the face of hardship.
Matthew Desmond is a professor at Harvard and the co-director of the Justice and Poverty Project. He is the author of multiple best-selling books, including On the Fireline and Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City, which won him the 2017 Pulitzer Prize for General Nonfiction and the 2016 National Book Critics Circle Award. His 2017 Pulitzer Prize citation read, “For a deeply researched exposé that showed how mass evictions after the 2008 economic crash were less a consequence than a cause of poverty.” Desmond is also the recipient of a 2015 Macarthur “Genius” Grant.
This event is a benefit for the Heading Home Campaign.