The Missing Class: Portraits of the Near Poor in America

The Missing Class Portraits of the Near Poor in America Fifty seven million Americans including percent of the nation s children live a notch above the poverty line and yet the challenges they face are largely ignored While government programs assist t

  • Title: The Missing Class: Portraits of the Near Poor in America
  • Author: Katherine S. Newman Victor Tan Chen
  • ISBN: 9780807041390
  • Page: 113
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Fifty seven million Americans including 21 percent of the nation s children live a notch above the poverty line, and yet the challenges they face are largely ignored While government programs assist the poor, and politicians woo the fortunate, the Missing Class is largely invisible and left to fend for itself Missing Class parents often work at a breakneck pace toFifty seven million Americans including 21 percent of the nation s children live a notch above the poverty line, and yet the challenges they face are largely ignored While government programs assist the poor, and politicians woo the fortunate, the Missing Class is largely invisible and left to fend for itself Missing Class parents often work at a breakneck pace to preserve the progress they have made and are but one divorce or unexpected hospitalization away from sliding into poverty Children face an even perilous and uncertain future because their parents have so little time to help them with their schoolwork or guide them during their adolescent years With little supervision, the younger generation often flounders in school, sometimes falling prey to the same problems that are prevalent in the much poorer communities that border Missing Class neighborhoods Paradoxically, the very efforts that enabled parents to get ahead financially often inhibit their children from advancing they are in real danger of losing what little ground their parents have gained.The Missing Class is an urgent and timely exploration that describes through the experiences of nine families the unique problems faced by this growing class of people who are neither working poor nor middle class Katherine Newman and Victor Tan Chen trace where these families came from, how they ve struggled to make a decent living, and why they re stuck without a safety net An eloquent argument for the need to think about inequality in a broader way, The Missing Class has much to tell us about whether the American dream still exists for those who are sacrificing daily to achieve it.

    • ↠ The Missing Class: Portraits of the Near Poor in America || ↠ PDF Read by ☆ Katherine S. Newman Victor Tan Chen
      113 Katherine S. Newman Victor Tan Chen
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      Posted by:Katherine S. Newman Victor Tan Chen
      Published :2018-08-16T17:04:20+00:00

    1 thought on “The Missing Class: Portraits of the Near Poor in America”

    1. "The Missing Class" is defined by its authors as being comprised of families of four that make between $20,000-$40,000 annually, based on figures in 2002. I grew up in the Missing Class. My father had been in the US since the 70s, and in 82 he married my mom and they moved to Boston. I was born four years later, and my mother was living on a university stipend (she went to school and also taught at Boston University while I was little) and my father worked his way up from a teller to a manager a [...]

    2. Newman and Chen spent 7 years following 9 New York families who they deemed part of the missing class. According to them the missing class is that class of people who fall just above the poverty line, but do not make enough money to qualify as lower middle class. In some respects they may often be worse off then those people who fall below the poverty line because they are usually no longer eligible for certain types of aid like Medicaid or AFDC. On the other hand they are often more likely to b [...]

    3. This book has a lot of very good information, but it was a little hard to follow because of the way it was organized. It's hard to keep track of which family is which and I think the overall message of the book was weakened a little by the lack of continuity in the narrative. It would have also been useful to have examples from other parts of the country besides New York City, possibly in some more suburban and rural areas as well. I'm sure the near poor exist there as well.

    4. I read this at the suggestion of my sociology professor. It's about a bunch of people who make stupid mistakes with their money that they can't afford to make. Not that anyone is perfect, but hello! If you're making $7.50 an hour at a factory job, you can't afford a $3500 liposuction, or a $10,000 wedding. I'm just saying.

    5. What ever happened to the American Dream? Talk radio in America would have you think that hard work and sacrifice will lead to success in America. But that isn't the case for many people as The Missing Class documents.

    6. book was interesting but dry in many places - i had a hard time feeling sympathetic/emphathetic for some of the featured people

    7. This book shows the intimate and personal details of the lives of real families who fall into the category which the authors define as "near-poor". It definitely has some issues. The writing style seems intended to dramatize the stories in ways that are unnecessary; these stories really speak for themselves and the editorial attempts at attention-grabbing weakened the narratives rather than enhancing them. It also led to some microaggressive moralizing that really made it challenging to just tak [...]

    8. The subtitle, "Portraits of the Near Poor in America", is right. While I can understand that a tremendous amount of time had to be spent interviewing the families, I can't understand the need to show it off rather than tie these personal stories to particular policy proposals that might one day help them. Each look into a different family's struggle is distressing, leaving one with the feeling that we need to throw more money into the system. But WHERE. HOW? People know that poverty exists and c [...]

    9. The Missing Class discusses the class of people sandwiched between the truly poor and the middle class. The authors call this class the "missing class" because they are not quite poor enough to be included when poverty issues are discussed, but they are not as well-established as most middle class people. These are the people who are on the edge of falling into or back into poverty. The authors follow nine families in New York City for seven years to see what their lives are like and what kinds [...]

    10. You know, I originally wrote about a few paragraphs about this book and then decided it wasn't worth the space on , and hit the delete button. I have kind of maxed myself out on sociology books recently, and this book kind made me hit my threshold. Essentially, the author profiles a few families in the "Middle Class", who work, but are still poor, who only miss the definition of "impoverished" by a few thousand dollars a year, according to the government standard. They linger somewhere between t [...]

    11. Upon reading the title, I had hoped that the authors would reach outside the bounds of traditional reporting and find the true missing class. Unfortunately they allowed their book to become nothing more than a book that highlights the plight facing one of our most impoverished people, immigrants. They highlight they issues facing immigrants, but fail to bring any new knowledge or information to he subject matter. In addition, they also fail to help create sustainable solutions. I expected a well [...]

    12. The book The Missing Class, in my opinion was not a good read. This is a non-fiction book that deals with different families and their struggle of being below middle class but above the poverty line. It skipped around from a lot of different families and wouldn't tell their end of the story until some where later on in the book. It dealt more on immigrants and races. The book was very unorganized in my opinion. The issue of this book is poverty and how it is affecting below middle class families [...]

    13. Shelby Stump's review Dec 11, 13The book The Missing Class, in my opinion was not a good read. This is a non-fiction book that deals with different families and their struggle of being below middle class but above the poverty line. It skipped around from a lot of different families and wouldn't tell their end of the story until some where later on in the book. It dealt more on immigrants and races. The book was very unorganized in my opinion. The issue of this book is poverty and how it is affec [...]

    14. I heard about this on NPR and got it at the library. It is very similar to "Nickeled and Dimed." The book follows the story of 9 families who are above the poverty line, but below "stability." We learn about the challenges of those who are working hard to provide for their families, and the precariousness of their economic position. Issues of education, gentrification, broken families, parenting, generational success or failure, immigration are all part of this complex issue.These issues can be [...]

    15. Ahh, a real treat for a person who can relate with the title. Based on a rather large socio-economic study conducted in the New York City area, this book really paints portraits of families and individuals that I could relate with (geographically and financially). It was a fantastic read, right up until the final two pages when the authors began to get opinionated. The ideas (so-called solutions) they had for helping the Missing Class were off-the-wall. My advice: just skip the last two pages.

    16. This is one of many books I've read about the poor (or in this case, almost-poor) working class in America. However--I recently had the revelation that it really doesn't matter how much money you make, it's how much money you spend and save that truly matters. Still, this book was interesting to read but I wish they hadn't concentrated on NYC-based families. I would've liked to seen a scattering of families across the country to see stories of the working almost-poor in different areas and lower [...]

    17. Learned that I had been part of lowest paid missing class; but paid for my home and both daughters to get there Bachelor Degrees. No fancy, clothes, hair or nails. Five vacations in 32 years of marriage. We are fortunate and happy. Much depends on saving whatever is left over from paying rent, utilities and basic food prepared at home, economical transportation. We have a content life in our retirement. Both daughters are employed. Sometimes working three jobs is necessary; but saving all the ex [...]

    18. I heard about this book from my friend Charity Fesler, whose reading group was discussing it during my visit to Princeton in January 2008. Written by a Princeton University professor, the book presents the issues faced by "the missing class," the working poor hovering on the brink of poverty, those families who are just one accident/tragedy/hospitalization/layoff away from falling into poverty. Though I had only read the first chapter prior to the discussion, the group conversation was fascinati [...]

    19. This was a fascinating, accessible read. The authors do a fantastic job telling the stories of this 'Missing' Class whose good fortune is often not enough to pry them from the grip of disadvantage. If more social scientists wrote in this fashion I'd probably read more social science. As it is, I tend to lean more toward humanistic examinations of these very important subjects. I enjoyed this book.

    20. This book delivered in exactly the way promised by the title and the jacket. Yet, I was hoping for a bit more. To be honest, I wanted more of a policy discussion, rather than details of the 7 year histories of 9 families living on the edge of poverty. But if you want to understand the way certain decisions can cause consequences that spiral out of control, this is a very good book.

    21. This sounded like an interesting book. It is somewhat interesting. I'm a bit disappointed that the author only uses examples from New York City. They can't possibly represent the U.S. as a whole.

    22. More liberal/progressive doing a whole bunch of analysis, but this time failing to connect the dotsally, it would be great if just once I weren't left disappointed by going, "ok, this academic is finally going to come out and say the system is oppressive beyond repair missed it."

    23. this book offers a fascinating (and daunting) look at a number of different families living just above the poverty line in America.

    24. About that group of working class people who make too much for government benefits but too little to be truly middle class. Any small emergency plunges them into debt.

    25. This is a great book - very easy to read but also nuanced and detailed in its analysis of the "near poor."

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