This is a summary of Place Matters: Metropolitics for the Twenty-First Century by Peter Dreier, John Mollenkopf, & Todd Swanstrom. This is only a summary of Chapters 1-4!!

2703 Words May 9th, 2004 11 Pages
Place Matters: Chapters 1-4

A community is a place where people around supposed to be able to live and thrive together. When one thinks of a community, the image that most likely is visualized is one of a place where each person lives harmoniously with all the other members of that community. While this may be the typical image of a community, it is not the realistic view. In reality communities can share both good and bad aspects. In Place Matters: Metropolitics for the Twenty-First Century Peter Dreier, John Mollenkopf, and Todd Swanstrom make the argument that the place a person lives ultimately matters over all else; the place which a person lives effects the choices that that he/she makes and determines his/her ability to obtain a
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People of different classes are moving away from each other not just in how much income they make but in where they live. America is breaking down into economically homogeneous enclaves. (Dreier, Mollenkopf, & Swanstrom 12)

In other words, America has a widening gap between its wealthy and poor. As the rich get richer and the poor get poorer, there is a problem emerging: the disappearance of the middle class. Low-wage workers continue to fall behind those who make higher wages, and this only widens the gap between the two. There has been an economic boom in the United States, which has made the country more prosperous than it has ever been. That prosperity does not reach all people; it seems to only favor the rich. Rising economic segregation has taken away many opportunities for the poor to rise in America today. The poor may find that the economic boom has increased their income; however, as their income increase so does the prices they must for their living expenses (Dreier, Mollenkopf, & Swanstrom 19).

Identifying economic class goes beyond determining how much money a person makes; it is also defined by where a person lives. The lowest people on the economic scale are assumed to live in central cities; the middle-low income people live in the inner-ring suburbs, and the wealthiest live in the exclusive outer-ring suburbs. The authors point out that as one moves outward from the central city to the inner-ring to outer-ring suburbs incomes rise

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