The Dream Revisited
Discussion 9: Residential Income Segregation

Discussion 9: Residential Income Segregation

November 2014

The ninth discussion in The Dream Revisited analyzes segregation by income and debates the significance of the increasing isolation of the affluent.

Essay

  • No Neighborhood is an Island

    by Sean F. Reardon, Kendra Bischoff

    Why, given its potential consequences, do we not pay more attention to the isolation of the rich?  Social scientists, journalists, and policymakers focus on poor neighborhoods in part because that is where the (visible) social problems are; in part because it is easier to study, report on, and intervene in poor places than in rich places; and in part because we routinely commit the outdated fallacy of assuming that concentrated social problems must have local causes. 

Discussants

  • The Durable Architecture of Segregation

    by Paul A. Jargowsky

    There is more to Reardon and Bischoff’s post than a call to be concerned with the fact that concentration of affluence is a thing that is happening out there in the world, and therefore we should study it. We ought to be concerned about rich ghettoes, to abuse the word, not because the concentration of affluence is something that is a worrisome trend in itself, but because this trend is inextricably bound up in societal processes that create and sustain the concentration of poverty.

  • Keep Concentrated Poverty at the Forefront

    by Michael Lens

    Reardon and Bischoff call on us to pay more attention to the segregation of the affluent, which by the authors’ measures has actually surpassed the segregation of the poor. While I agree that we should potentially be concerned about the increasing segregation of the affluent, there are also some fundamental reasons why concentrated poverty is likely to remain a greater concern.

  • Spread the Wealth, or Spread the Wealthy?

    by Lee Fennell

    In this response, I want to raise three questions prompted by this analysis. First, is greater residential dispersion of the most affluent necessary to counter the effects Reardon and Bischoff identify? Second, is it sufficient to address those effects? And third, is it feasible?   

More Discussions