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Myth of the welfare queen : a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist's portrait of women on the line

by Zucchino, David.

Format: Print Book 1997
Availability: Available at 3 Libraries 3 of 3 copies
Available (3)
Location Collection Call #
Bethel Park Public Library Nonfiction 305.42 ZU
Location  Bethel Park Public Library
Collection  Nonfiction
Call Number  305.42 ZU
CLP - Main Library Mezzanine - Non-fiction HV91.Z85 1997
Location  CLP - Main Library
Collection  Mezzanine - Non-fiction
Call Number  HV91.Z85 1997
Carnegie Library of McKeesport Nonfiction 362.82 Z82
Location  Carnegie Library of McKeesport
Collection  Nonfiction
Call Number  362.82 Z82
Published Reviews
Booklist Review: "Looking behind the "welfare queen" stereotype, Philadelphia Inquirer foreign editor Zucchino attempts to educate readers about the realities that this calumny masks. "From Independence Day 1995 to New Year's Day 1996, [Zucchino] followed the lives of several unmarried welfare mothers living in the ghetto of North Philadelphia." His book "is the story of survival by single mothers during the dying days of the American welfare state." Central to its narrative are Odessa Williams, 56, raising grandchildren and great-grandchildren, as well as neighbor kids left in the lurch by troubled parents; Cheri Honkalas, activist for the homeless at Philly's Tent City; and Ivory Jennings, a determined teenager with as little tolerance for many of her fellow welfare recipients as conservative Republican politicians. Vivid, powerful portraits of the women behind the stereotype. --Mary Carroll"
From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Publisher's Weekly Review: "For six months in 1995, Zucchino, now the Philadelphia Inquirer's foreign editor, observed the world of several welfare mothers living in grim North Philadelphia. His narrative is rich in detail but not in analysis. His main character, Odessa Williams, is a God-fearing, redoubtable grandmother who, despite her limited education and health problems, helps care for several generations of her extended family through savvy shopping, scouring others' discards and off-the-books entrepreneurship. He also focuses on Cheri Honkala, the unpaid organizer of a local welfare rights group, who struggles to keep the members together, maintain pressure on intransigent officials and pay her considerable debts. The book includes memorable scenes, such as Honkala's effort to establish a "tent city" near the Liberty Bell and the holiday dinner for the poor catered by an apparent mobster seeking a PR boost. As the title suggests, these inspiring women‘with limited skills in a tight job market‘hardly live well. It's unfortunate that Zucchino does not probe further the link between welfare and behavior: Why have some of Williams's children escaped into the working class, while one daughter is a drug-addicted prostitute and one granddaughter neglects her children? Those questions also need answers in our current policy debate. (Mar.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved"
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Additional Information
Subjects Welfare recipients -- United States -- Social conditions.
Welfare recipients -- United States -- Economic conditions.
Women -- United States -- Social conditions.
Women -- United States -- Economic conditions.
Publisher New York, NY :Scribner,1997
Language English
Description 366 pages ; 24 cm
Bibliography Notes Includes bibliographical references (pages 351-354) and index.
ISBN 0684819147
Other Classic View