From Publishers Weekly
Beginning with the development of Camden, New Jersey, the authors, professors of public policy and law (Univ. of California-Berkeley), examine the politics of land-use regulation and its impact on poor and black residents. It becomes abundantly clear why urban renewal in the 1960s and 1970s was frequently called "Negro removal." Their analysis focuses on the legal battle that developed as suburban development threatened black and poor residents of the nearby community of Mount Laurel. The Mount Laurel cases are traced through state and federal courts and assessed in terms of their encouragement of fair housing policies and discouragement of exclusionary zoning. This book is rich in detail and offers important insights into the politics of urban development and its impact on poorer residents. It will be invaluable to specialists in urban studies and planning and a fascinating read for others knowledgeable about urban politics and civil rights.
William Waugh Jr., Georgia State Univ., Atlanta
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc.
A wellûwritten, exhaustively researched account of the legal battle to open New JerseyÆs suburbs to the poor . . . The authors actually took the time to talk to the lawyers and litigants on both sides of the controversy. Their chronicle of the legal developments is informed, and much improved, by the fleshûandûblood stories of those who actually lived the case. . . . a cautionary and inspiring tale.
This book is both an inspiring account of public interest law at its best and a sobering assessment of how æthe soul of suburbiaæ continues to resist social justice. . . . an unexpectedly moving account of hope, idealism, and intelligence.
(New York Times Book Review
The authors of Our Town in particular enable readers to see historical continuity and discontinuity in legal and popular discussions of race, racism, and housing patterns in American society. Our Town also explores the challenges to public policy raised by the existence of residential segregation patterns.
[This book] is valuable both as a case study of judicial activism and its consequences and as a detailed analysis of suburban attitudes regarding race, class, and property.
(Urban Affairs Review
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