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Snob Zones: Fear, Prejudice, and Real Estate Hardcover – May 7, 2013


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Beacon Press; 1st Edition, 1st Printing edition (May 7, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0807001570
  • ISBN-13: 978-0807001578
  • Product Dimensions: 5.7 x 0.8 x 8.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #321,173 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

“Lisa Prevost masterfully chronicles how suburban and rural communities raise land-use drawbridges to exclude not just racial minorities and the poor but also middle-class families and the young. The cost of such exclusion is huge, and Prevost makes a powerful case for greater inclusion to strengthen local economies and community vitality.” —Chuck Collins, author of 99 to 1: How Wealth Inequality Is Wrecking the World and What We Can Do about It
 
“In Snob Zones, Lisa Prevost elegantly reveals the senselessness of NIMBYism, and the myriad ways in which affluent communities, in the name of self-interest, harm themselves and American society. A must-read for people who give a damn and want to gain insights on how we can do better, for ourselves and our children.” —Sheryll Cashin, author of The Failures of Integration: How Race and Class Are Undermining the American Dream
 
“From the exploits of savvy gadfly developers upending ritzy Connecticut suburbs with plans for high-density housing scattered amid posh colonial houses to an aging New Hampshire town struggling with deep-rooted prejudices, Prevost charts a national problem on a local level. . . . [H]ousing policy analysts and populists will nod in assent to her well-drawn critiques of the ‘fortress mentality’ that makes local restrictions understandable from within and unconscionable from without.” —Publishers Weekly

“Prevost nicely connects the overarching trend of an ever more expensive housing market with a series of profiles of New England towns determined to bar all but the most costly single-family homes.” —Boston Real Estate Now
 

About the Author

Lisa Prevost is an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in the New York Times, Boston Globe Magazine, More, Ladies’ Home Journal, and other publications. A native New Englander, she has lived and worked as a reporter in four of the six New England states. She lives in Fairfield, Connecticut.

More About the Author

Lisa Prevost is the author of "Snob Zones: Fear, Prejudice, and Real Estate" (Beacon Press, 2013). She is an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in the New York Times, Boston Globe Magazine, More, Ladies' Home Journal, and other publications. A native New Englander, she has lived and worked as a reporter in four of the six New England states. She lives in Fairfield, Connecticut.

Photo Credit: Douglas Healey, 2012.

Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Rich on July 10, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
A well-written but one-sided view of so-called exclusionary zoning. There's some good background material here, especially on the history of each of the featured locales. But the author relies overmuch on sources that provide conclusions that support her theory that this is really about snobbery rather than actually challenging both sides to explain their reasoning. She's on her shakiest ground defending for-profit developers who are simply using affordable housing laws to achieve a fast buck in built-out communities that can't hope to hit state targets any time soon. And her suggestion that modern day zoning is still mostly driven by racism and religious intolerance is absurd, and unsupported by actual reporting. Another 50 pages devoted to thinking through the topic at a deeper level would have yielded a better and more credible book.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Edna St. Vincent Malaise on March 28, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Gave as a gift. Assume everything was okay. No complaints. Wish I had the option of limiting future recommendations just to items I buy and ship to myself.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By johnr on October 8, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
On the whole, Ms Prevost's book gives enlightening portraits of the ways zoning, preservation, etc. have been used to "keep out the undesireables." It reminded me of LANDSCAPES OF PRIVILEGE, which was a similiar look at Bedford, NY. I disagreed with her chapter on Milbridge, ME. My late parents and grandparents have lived there, as does a cousin and his family. The trouble she describes is less folks trying to be "aryans from Darien" and more a case of people who see that they have had dig hard for their lives and see what comes across as someone getting something for nothing. You don't have to be a racist or snob to be upset at that perception, as incorrect as it might be.
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