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There Goes the Hood: Views of Gentrification from the Ground Up Paperback – July 28, 2006

ISBN-13: 978-1592134373 ISBN-10: 1592134378

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 248 pages
  • Publisher: Temple University Press (July 28, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1592134378
  • ISBN-13: 978-1592134373
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6.1 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #201,755 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Rather than hewing to theory by asking professionals about gentrification in minority-dominated urban areas, Columbia assistant professor Freeman takes a practical approach, bringing his questions to the residents themselves. Focusing on New York City neighborhoods Harlem, in Manhattan, and Brooklyn's Clinton Hill, he asks residents about everything from widespread retail development to expensive apartments and residential developments. What he uncovers is a "nuanced reaction toward gentrification. ... welcome by some and feared and loathed by others, and even dreaded and welcomed at the same time by the same people." It's Freeman's pursuit of this duality that makes the book strong-he's willing to admit that gentrification is both a pleasure and a problem, rather than setting up camp on one side. He explores the reasons that residents welcome gentrification, and the very real, though by no means universal benefits imparted by it. Simple experiences like grocery shopping in a clean, well-lit store, or eating at a decent restaurant, are new and much-appreciated by indigenous residents-except that those residents must struggle to afford such places, despite the measure of economic opportunity created by them. That sense of balance, combined with the powerful voices of the folks involved, that makes this study important and informative. 16 b & w illustrations.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Review

"Focusing on New York City neighborhoods Harlem, in Manhattan, and Brooklyn's Clinton Hill, [Freeman] asks residents about everything from widespread retail development to expensive apartments and residential developments. What he uncovers is a 'nuanced reaction toward gentrification...welcome by some and feared and loathed by others, and even dreaded and welcomed at the same time by the same people.' It's Freeman's pursuit of this duality that makes the book strong-he's willing to admit that gentrification is both a pleasure and a problem, rather than setting up camp on one side. That sense of balance, combined with the powerful voices of the folks involved, that makes this study important and informative." Publishers Weekly "This book will add much to the gentrification debates. We know very little about black neighborhoods and how they are changing. This is an important piece of work." Kathe Newman, Rutgers University "A welcome addition to the literature on gentrification in US cities." Choice "The book is written in clear, straightforward prose and Freeman is to be commended for his original approach, and for his mixed-methods strategy...This is a well-researched, well-written and interesting book, but deeply controversial and likely to be used by promoters of gentrification as a very solid academic endorsement". Housing Studies "In There Goes the 'Hood, Freeman is much more critical of the gentrification process, and it is his critique that is the substantive impact of this book. The impact is strongest where he argues against the much heralded poverty deconcentration thesis in the United States, in programmes like HOPE VI and Moving to Opportunity...[T]his book is well worth reading. It is motivated by pragmatic concerns about how planning and policy can create more just and livable cities, concerns that I and many others share. Given the way that gentrification is being promoted by urban policy makers worldwide as the solution for inner-city woes this book provides a more balanced view of the pros and cons of gentrification than most to date." Environment and Planning A "There Goes the 'Hood focuses on the experience of gentrification and in that regard it is an important work in the ongoing struggles over neighborhood change. By being honest about race, by focusing strongly on human beings and their stories, and by setting a strong goal of nuanced storytelling, Freeman has consciously opened more doors for future research than he has closed. For anyone interested in the subject, and especially those interested in contributing their voice to the growing literature, it is a worthwhile and important read." The Berkeley Planning Journal "Impressive...Perhaps his singular accomplishment is to correct academic literature's glaringly simple-minded assumption that residents of poor black gentrifying neighborhoods have uniform reactions to what is happening to their home territory. For doing this alone, he deserves applause, because, as hard as it might be to believe, this insight will come as news to many." The Journal of Planning Education and Research "There Goes the 'Hood represents a new complementary approach to research on gentrification...The book is well worth reading for urban geographers and planners, especially because Freeman presents a balanced view that takes both the good and the bad sides of gentrification into account and brings out the indigenous residents' perception of the process." The Journal of Housing and the Built Environment "I am recommending this book highly...it is a substantial contribution to the literature on gentrification and, additionally, to the literature on predominantly African American neighborhoods." Urban Affairs Review "[R]elevant, local, and a contribution to the great debate over gentrification." - Inga Saffron, Philadelphia Enquirer

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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By M. Ghazal on December 23, 2009
Format: Paperback
Freeman's book, first, is brilliant methodologically. Oral testimony has been used redundantly in gentrification studies, but not in this same way. Perhaps his work is a critical account of academic understandings of gentrification, in which case, interviews with locals in a gentrifying neighborhood reveal that the process, on this level, is hardly articulated in terms of "uneven development" or "new frontier consumption". In this work, Freeman sets out to emotionally and mentally map gentrifying neighborhoods: How do the residents feel pre- or post- gentrification? What are they thinking will happen? How are they making sense of it? The answers, in interviews, show that understandings of the phenomenon range from conspiratorial to economic to optimistic, crossing class and racial lines, blurring the white-urban-invader and the middle-class-revenge paradigms. Furthermore, augmenting these with an deep history of the two neighborhoods, Freeman points out, gentrification in Harlem and Clinton Hill did not produce this same displacement of the working class. In a sense, he's a bit optimistic about its changes. It's written in fantastic prose, extremely articulate and clear. The interviews just add a personal dimension to a field that has often been reduced to bricks and numbers.

The downside of this work is Freeman's obscure optimism. He discredits the "working-class displacement" understanding of gentrification as generally inapplicable, yet suggests that Smith's "Revanchist City" is somewhat accurate. His apparent explanation for this is that economic studies of gentrification seem to wield more pessimistic conclusions than social or cultural studies. Odd. Nonetheless, a genius and highly recommended work!
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful By C.L. on December 6, 2006
Format: Paperback
There Goes the Hood provides a historical look at both Harlem and Clinton Hill and then moves into their current day status with all of the attendent challenges and benefits. Though Freeman notes that he is a quantitative researcher his ability to conduct a qualitative study that speaks to academics, policy makers, and the general public is no small feat. His illumination of the voices of the community could only be enhanced by adding in more perspective from the gentry themselves(particularly the white gentry). Overall I thnk the book is a must read for those who are interested in gentrification and communities of color.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is one of the best works I have ever read on gentrification. Lance Freeman does a masterful job of weaving in personal interviews (which most treatments on the topic seem to overlook) throughout the book which gives the reader insight as to how indigenous residents feel about the process. I came away from the reading with a deeper and more well-rounded grasp of the subject. Lastly, I appreciate Freeman's honesty and humility in handling the topic in that he pointed out the positives along with the negatives.
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By W.R.N.W on February 12, 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I highly recommend this book to anyone interested in urban housing and gentrification processes that are occurring in most major US cities. The author uses data drawn from qualitative interviews to understand the experiences of local residents as their communities undergo new transformation.
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4 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Marshall E. Crawford Jr. on January 11, 2007
Format: Paperback
When a young brother paints a picture about the past, will anyone one see it? Dr. Freeman is a young brother and he has the attention on many. Not only are people seeing it, but they hear him loud and clear. For years people were afaid of the "hood." Now they want the "hood."

Lance does an excellent job telling the story of how others want what African America's have failed to take care of. The hood is now for sale! Thanks Lance for writing such an insightful book.
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