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The Culture Of Poverty

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SPENT is a game that allows a person to make decisions concerning money to get through the month. It gives people an outlook of how difficult it can be to make it through the month with a low amount of income. It gives people a new outlook on poverty and why people in those positions make the decisions they do.
During the SPENT game, I had to make a series of decisions on how to spend my money. I played the SPENT game twice, the first time was just to get an understanding of the game and the second time I took notes about my decisions. I made it through the month each time but with very little money left and rent was due the next day. The game starts off with a choice of job, health insurance, and housing. For my job, I chose “2nd Shift”
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I believe that all of the myths the author discussed, are common beliefs to most people. We stereotype people based off of their wealth even though those stereotypes do not reign true a majority of the time. I will admit that many of the myths the author discussed were common beliefs to me before reading the article and playing the game SPENT. After playing the game and reading the article, it gave me a new outlook on people in poverty. It helped me to see why some families living in poverty make the decisions that they do. The decision is not always ideal but sometimes it is just what needs to be done. In the game, I learned that when a person is in poverty, they have to make some very tough decisions. Many of those decisions could be between money and family. The article discusses how the parents of a family in poverty usually have to choose between going to work and going to events or volunteering at school. Although they may want to go, they need to go to work to make money and provide for their family. According to the article, parents of a family in poverty are less likely to attend the school events “not because they care less about education, but because they have less access to school involvement than their wealthier peers” (Gorski). Although in the game I did not have to make a decision about going to…show more content…
One topic that we discussed that can be related to the game and article is stratification. Stratification is a system of inequality. One type of system of inequality there is are class systems. The class system breaks down an income of a family into upper class, lower-upper class, upper-middle class, middle class, working class, and poverty. The game lets a person make decisions during the month and allows them to see what it would be like to live in one of those classes, particularly in poverty. Then, the article discusses poverty and the myths people have about it and the realities of it. The last concept that can be related to the game and article is labeling theory. Labeling theory states that a person will act based off the way they are labeled. Many people with that label will act in a certain way but not by choice. For example, people in poverty may be perceived as not as hard working or smart in school, but they usually just do not have as many opportunities as others because they go to schools that have less funding.
The SPENT game and article helped me get a new understanding of people in poverty. The SPENT game showed me ways that people in poverty have to make difficult decisions, many happening to be between money and family. The article helped to explain myths people have about poverty and what the realities
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