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Black Wealth / White Wealth: A New Perspective on Racial Inequality Hardcover – May 5, 2006

ISBN-13: 978-0415951661 ISBN-10: 0415951666 Edition: 2nd

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 360 pages
  • Publisher: Routledge; 2 edition (May 5, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0415951666
  • ISBN-13: 978-0415951661
  • Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 6.3 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,764,213 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"...challenges the assertions that the failure of black entrepreneurship is rooted in a poor work ethic and an inability to defer gratification. Oliver and Shapiro are not asking for 'special privileges' for black people. They are calling for a level playing field." -- Robin D.C. Kelley, Voice Literary Supplement

"...reveals for the first time the full economic damage caused by the special difficulties that blacks face.... These facts need to be publicized so that white Americans can be made aware of the extent to which the civil rights movement of the 1960s failed to achieve its goal of fairness for blacks." -- George M. Fredrickson, The New York Review of Books

"In Black Wealth/White Wealth," sociologists Melvin Oliver and Tom Shapiro documented the huge racial disparity in accumulated resources." -- Newsweek --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Melvin Oliver is Professor and Dean of Social Sciences, University of California-Santa Barbara.
Thomas Shapiro is Professor, Brandeis University.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

38 of 40 people found the following review helpful By Eric W. Macaux on May 28, 2000
Format: Paperback
The arguement that the past thirty years have resulted in a closing of the gap between whites and blacks seems untenable after reading this book. Using wealth instead of income as a measure of success and progress, Oliver and Shapiro argue that glaring inequalities still exist and may actually be growing. Moreover, since creating wealth is far more difficult when one has none to begin, the authors argue that such inequalities are sure to continue unless significant changes are made to the social safety net. These premises certainly call into question the notion of a vibrant black middle class.
Overall, I found the book to be scholarly, yet accessible to those who don't hold a Ph.D. in research methodology. The information was nicely balanced; the interviews complemented the extensive survey data and everything was clearly presented. My only complaint is that the statistical information was not presented in the appendix with the tables. This would have been useful and meaningful to academics reading the book. That being said, the thesis is a profound one, and for all those with an interest in social equity and social policy this is a must-read.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By C. Nguyen on July 19, 2007
Format: Paperback
This was very well written and had an abundant series of examples to support the authors' main point--with references to government documents, tables, graphs. Oliver and Shapiro can be extremely repetitive in restating their thesis, but, overall, the book was very eye-opening and perhaps a little depressing.

You'd make it a point not invest the majority of your wealth in the home and car after reading this book.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The reading reminded me of my --great-great-grandparents, great-grandparents, grandparents and my present family who fought the good fight to become recognized as citizens of this great country despite the unjust policies, both legal and illegal, lining their path and that of my current family. The book's contents have been placed as a must-read for my grandchildren.. Our family history has put all of it in its proper order with historical events lining the path hopefully to a promising future. Through it all we clung to the Hope perched on their shoulders as they walked into their sunset.
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Format: Paperback
One of the most underreported stories of the post-2007 Great Recession era is the wiping out of much of the gains in African-American wealth. As bad as it was as of the 2nd Ediction of this book, it has horribly regressed. The story of why so bad up to 2006 is well told and needed. That there has now been dramatic loss, and relative worsening compared to White America, yet again, is an important tragice follow-up story. It has been told in the progressive press (e.g, The Nation), but only in a fragmented way. Hopefully thse authors will follow-up with a new third edition.
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