Harlem, NY used to be a majority black neighborhood in the 1950s when its population consisted of 341,000 African-Americans. From a census taken in 2010, the population went through a significant drop of only 41% African-Americans (Sam Roberts, 2010). Of course, this is an attribute to gentrification, where residents seeking affordable-living are pushed out of their haven, a home where their family’s roots are planted and have no other choice than to move farther and find a place to meet the need for
He describes the white flight from the inner cities to the suburbs, leaving neighborhoods with high concentrations of poor minorities behind. The Missing Class examines a similar theme of gentrification of neighborhoods, illuminated by the example of the Floyd family in the Clinton Hill neighborhood in north central Brooklyn. “Once in decline, the neighborhood is now on the upswing . . . various factories have shut their doors, the affordable housing has disappeared, and upscale apartments have sprouted.” (Newman & Chen, pg. 12). The Floyds lost their one financial asset, their home, when they were swindled by a contractor who promised to fix up the house, and allow them to pay their loan off over time. The Floyds lament about the influx of affluent white Yuppies in their neighborhood, a place where they know everyone and have lived for the past twenty years, wondering what it will mean for the neighborhood’s identity, wondering if it will still be a black neighborhood. According to another neighbor, despite the rising prices, most black residents won’t sell their homes. “Their family roots are in the South, where property carries with it both tradition and responsibility” (pg. 15). Clearly, the loss of a house or a neighborhood could deeply affect a person’s sense of self and a sense of pride, leaving someone grasping for their once stable identity.
To help counter these negative racial effects, there have been different movements in the borough to help concentrate the influence of communities that have traditionally lived in the area. Middle class African Americans in Brooklyn, specifically, have searched for ways to continue to help define Brooklyn in a way that isn’t resistant to change, but that helps to keep the influence of groups such as black Brooklynites inside the
Brooklyn, New York, was once an area that many people who were moving to the New York City region took as a granted place for low-rent homes and apartments. However, many people currently, particularly those people of color, are finding themselves displaced out of Brooklyn due to growing high rents and the inevitable growth of gentrification. Gentrification occurs in urban neighborhoods when the arrival of wealthier people and higher-end businesses results in an increased displacement of lower income families and small businesses. This additionally directly causes an increase in rents and property values and changes in the socio-economic structure for that town. For my paper, I hope to focus on the effects of gentrification for communities of color in Brooklyn.
Anderson makes a strong case for the inevitability of ghetto life--in other words, once "ghettoization" begins, it continues its course without regard to a neighborhood's tentative and transitory movement toward gentrification. The middle class and well-heeled whites and minority cultures who move into regenerating urban communities are attracted to city life for its vibrancy and "charm," yet they ultimately are playing with fire when it comes to sharing the same neighborhood which was formerly the turf of gangs, prostitutes, drug dealers, and other societal deviants. Such areas are frequently called "colorful," when they are, in fact, dangerous. Charm and color quickly turn to fear and suspicion after more than enough reports of car break-ins, gang retaliations, and drug deals gone bad fill the local news. As Anderson (1990) points out in his conclusion:
The garden city movement, a method of urban planning that was initiated in 1898 by Sir Ebenezer Howard, had a significant influence on urban planning. The theory of urban planning has envolved over the past hundred years, some have attempted to emulate theories from the garden city movement, while others have been revised based on Howard’s original ideas. The Garden City concept spawned many ideas of urban planning. Among these ideas, the Garden Suburb, Satellite City, the New Towns Movement and the New Urbanism are all significant theories in the history of urban planning and had their influence to this day. The integration of town and country, the separation of conflicting land uses and modes of travel, and the ideas of growth management are all elements of the Garden City concept that have made made their ways into plans of most major Western cities.
Gentrification is a method by which poor and working-class neighborhoods in the inner-city are redeveloped. It is a phenomenon that happens when low-income neighborhoods undergo alterations due to an influx of wealthier residents. Kelefa Sanneh starts his article on gentrification with a conversation about the word ghetto; its origins and how the word is now being used in the context of predominantly low-income African American communities. After discussing a debate among sociologists about the usage of the word ghetto, Sanneh points out an interesting turn in popular view: while the term ghetto was once used as an insult, people are now trying to preserve the communities that are described as a ghetto. Later, Sanneh discusses the different
Research has shown that the economic benefits of gentrification spread beyond the white people. Social scientists have gathered a census to measure the total income in a neighborhood that had been gentrified, and the result shown that that the demographic group that had the greatest impact in the census were the black residents with high-school diplomas (Roos). They contributed to almost one-third of the income gain while the college graduates only contributed to twenty percent of the income gain (Kiviat). However, that is not always the case. In Sherman Alexie’s short story Gentrification, he displays an example of a less fortunate black neighborhood. The narrator was a white man with a middle class background and his neighborhood was that of lower class, putting him in situations where the neighbors perceived it as a racist act. The narrator’s actions were portrayed as a sign of showing superiority and being the only white man, the narrator unknowingly made it seem like he was superior racially as well. Such misunderstandings lead to the resentment of a certain
Armstrong, D. (2000). A survey of community gardens in upstate New York: Implications for health promotion and community development. Health & Place 6 (2000) 319-327. Retrieved from https://nccommunitygardens.ces.ncsu.edu/wp-content/uploads/2014/02/researchArmstrongSurveyNYHealthCommunityDevelopment.pdf?fwd=no
Gentrification presents itself when outsiders enter an urban community, commonly densely populated with people of color, and through complicit actions wards off the residents within. As the area begins to gain popularity and appeal, the soaring property prices create an incentive for the property owners to rid of the tenants to make room for the newcomers. Furthermore, corporations begin to supersede homes and exploit defenseless communities. Although the newcomers do tend to improve these previously indigent neighborhoods, it comes at the destruction of the cultures that exist within said neighborhoods. Therefore, the amenities of the communities of color enervate in the name of gentrification.
Since the early 2000s, gentrification accelerated in various New York City neighborhoods. Data shown that about 29.8 percent of New York City has been affected by gentrification in low-income communities (Governing Data 1). This is over a 20 percent increased from the previous decade in New York City alone. Gentrification is a term used to describe displacement or renewal in urban neighborhoods as a result of increasing property values and rent prices. Gentrification has existed since the 1960s but has rapidly increased since then . Gentrification has now become a common and global controversial topic in many low-income neighborhood. Although, gentrification hasn’t always been bad from increasing job opportunities to lowering crime rates. Gentrification has impacted and transformed underprivileged districts in New York City. However, at the advantage of who ? Thus, gentrification has only increased average rates of poverty and infused neighborhoods with “white privilege”.
The implementation of school gardens would not only foster several learning opportunities such as the teaching of biology, nutrition, economics of production, and sustainability, but it would allow schools to adopt a cost-effective method of providing nutritious, satiating lunches. The National School Lunch Program provides reimbursements to schools to ensure the continuous supply of lunches, but to make a complete meal with an average of $2.93 along with the expenses of labor, equipment, electricity, and maintenance is not unsustainable. Despite the low cost of maintenance and the fact that nothing is ever free, school gardens can produce an abundance of low-cost fruits and vegetables that can serve as the basis of every school breakfast and lunch, considerably reducing the costs of lunches and encouraging the betterment the overall nutrition and physical health of students. In addition, school compost systems could also be cost-beneficial as they cut spending on waste management fees; for instance, in a New York pilot program, one school saved over $6000 annually in fees. These savings could be reinvested in the school lunch program or into the advocating of health. Also, because up to eighty percent of typical school garbage is compostable material, the compost can be used to fertilize and maintain the school gardens, furthering the reduction of costs. The stated policies would not only lessen the gap between poverty and improved health, but would foster a new and innovative way to promote financial and physical health in
“Critics often charge that gentrification constitutes a white “invasion” of poor black and Hispanic neighborhoods” (Levine, 2015). Re-developed neighborhoods often lose significant numbers in the African American population while gaining an overwhelming increase of white residents. In New York, the portion of
In addition, gentrification has several ways of being creeping into our neighborhood but at the end the outcomes have been quite similar. Our society has always viewed neighborhoods were minorities live in as being the ghettos, slums, or ‘hoods of America. When many of us come across an urbanized area we generally assume violence, drug trafficking, and overall social pathologies strive these places. Once we hear these “ghetto’s” are under going gentrification, we have a sense of relief and we feel there is hope for these communities. Gentrification may seem a blessing to an urban community by many, but if it were to be closely examine it we would find out it isn’t. Although the process has solved many economic issues within cities by providing employment opportunities, increases in property tax revenues and has diminished violence, the aftermath is far worse. (Freeman) Gentrification has increased the
Suburbs started popping up outside the metropolis that were centered around manufacturing plants, railroads, streetcars, and finally, the automobile (Chen et. al.). This is evident by the fact that over 60 percent of American homes own a vehicle by 1929 (Chen et. al.). One of the terms that often is synonymous with the concepts of sprawl and suburbanization is the popularity of “lawn culture” in neighborhoods (Chen et. al.). This idea of having a green space in the form of a lawn, was a representation of autonomy because it allowed people to attach themselves to the marriage between city and country (Chen et. al.). The automobile allowed for people to easily commute from work to home, introducing cul-de-sacs and winding roads to the suburbs (Chen et. al.). However, this process of suburbanization largely favored white middle class, due to the unfair discriminatory practices loan agencies used to disadvantage minorities in their ability to buy homes (Chen et. al.). Today, we still see the vast plethora of effects that discriminatory decisions of Americas’ past have on today’s Americans; we have a long way to go towards rectifying the great injustices that have been done to minority races, we must continuously work towards educating the masses about history so that we can change the