Savage Inequalities A Mid Book Summary

I did not make my goal of having finished Savage Inequalities by Jonathon Kozol by end of November, but I am over half way through the book. With this the book has held my interest and when I find the time to sit down and read, I read away.  Some notable quotes taken from the book include:

"Eighth grade graduation, here as elsewhere in Chicago, is regarded as a time of celebration, much as twelfth grade graduation would be celebrated int he suburbs." - Page 49.

I really latched onto this quote having taught at a school where 8th grade graduation seemed as such. Students would dress in extravagant dresses and the after party seemed to last a very long time including a dance and food. When there were talks of getting rid of the celebration as other schools in the district had it was always disbanded as the community held strong values in this special time in their child's lives.

"Though the nature of the poverty in rural schools is often somewhat different." - Page 73

Having seen both I can't agree more with this statement. It is very difficult to explain the differences to some one who hasn't seen both.  Many people classify poverty as one thing. It is not; it is many things all combined together to make the word whose definition can very by area, region, etc.  Here Kozol goes on to describe the differences as students in urban areas are a) able to see the contrast between rich districts and their own b) racial segregation by neighborhood and districts is obvious  c) rural poverty is seen as bleak vs. in urban poverty could be viewed as "lazarettos"

"The city has 200 liquor stores and bars and 180 gambling establishments, no movie theater, one chain supermarket, no new-car dealership, few restaurants other than some fast-food places." - Page 128

This struck me as part of my master's degree in K-6 Math Specialist I had to write a paper on a topic chosen by myself. I can't remember the parameters of the paper, but it had to do with social or cultural or regional something or another. Regardless I wrote mine on the number of liquor establishments in Josephine, Jackson, and Curry County in comparison to people population and employment rate. Similar to Kozol the high number per person/area was correlated to educational SES and employment rate.  In my paper; however, being so close to the California border I noted the differences in which this could cause due to different liquor licensing rules. Either way it is an interesting correlation.

So far I highly recommend this for anyone in a public field who works with people.  It is a very good look at social injustices in the perspectives of community members, children, and those who research the topics.

Final summary hopefully coming in a couple weeks.


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