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ERIC Number: EJ1002278
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 7
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 0
ISSN: ISSN-0895-4852
The Poverty of Poverty Research
Mead, Lawrence M.
Academic Questions, v25 n4 p539-545 Dec 2012
The welfare reform was a revolution, for academe as well as social policy. In the 1990s, work requirements in the main family aid program were sharply stiffened, and largely as a result, more than two-thirds of welfare mothers left the rolls, with most of those departing entering jobs. It was the most radical change in American domestic policy since civil rights. The results were overwhelmingly positive. Reform, however, was a defeat for academic social science. The majority of university experts on poverty and welfare opposed the change, fearing that poor families could not cope with the new work demands and hardship would result. The author's interest here is in how the academic establishment responded to this reverse. Barricaded within the universities, most still resist the more realistic view of poverty that has come to prevail in government. Most people in government are more realistic. They think that government should indeed help the poor, but to overcome poverty the poor themselves must also work and study harder, and avoid crime and unwed pregnancy. That is not a message today's academy wants to hear. So scholars withdraw into a world of research largely cut off from the real world. It is all part of the growing estrangement of the university from ordinary American life. (Contains 14 footnotes.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A