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Soc_2070_class_3 - Soc 2070 Problems in Contemporary...

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Soc 2070: Problems in Contemporary Society Inequality, poverty and their causes Thursday, September, 4th, 2008
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Today Measure of inequality Income vs. wealth Causes of inequality and poverty
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Dynamic Analysis: Is there a stable population of “poor”? 1979-1991 1 in 3 Americans experiences at least one spell of poverty between 1979-91. 45 % end within a year and 70% within 3. Only 12% lasts for 10 years or more. Half of those who end poverty spells return within 4 years.
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Dynamic Analysis: Is there a stable population who is poor? More recent estimates Nearly one-third of the population had at least one spell of poverty lasting 2 or more months during the 3-year period from 2001 to 2003. Chronic poverty was relatively uncommon, with 2.4 percent of the population living in poverty all 36 months of the period.
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Barbara Ehrenreich. “Nickel-and-dimed” Textured account of poverty and inequality Working poor Barely above the poverty line Unstable jobs/ two jobs Long commute/ inadequate housing No healthcare/ no room for the unexpected Stress and anxiety
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Poverty and inequality: Income vs. wealth Wealth : Total assets (savings, stocks, 401K, home equity) minus debts and liabilities. Transformative assets: resources that can put a family on an economic and social path beyond the means of their salaries.
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