Everyone has an explanation for poverty. The poor lack personal responsibility. There aren’t enough jobs. The stresses of poverty keep people poor. Poor people have a “culture of poverty.” The debate among these different explanations has gone on for centuries without meaningfully improving our understanding of the issue.
We choose one of these views largely based on the experiences of our own lives, and on those of our families. By looking at why we each choose one of these views over the others, Eric Meade reveals what is valid in each of these views. He then combines them to create a more coherent explanation that can deepen our understanding of poverty and stimulate wiser action to reduce it.
"Meade's writing is lucid, and his arguments are pervasive ... With Reframing Poverty, Meade has created a valuable work that offers an insightful method for examining poverty and seeking solutions to this pervasive problem."
"A provocative book that upends conventional thinking and forces the reader to think deeply about what poverty is, why some people are poor, and what to do about it. Definitely worth the read."
"Why are people poor and what should be done about it? In this insightful book, Meade maps the four basic theories that scholars and activists cluster around and often go to war over. He goes on to show how each holds a partial truth, and how we can - and need to - construct a broader perspective that encompasses them all. Be ready to be challenged. This work could change the entire field."
"In this eloquently crafted and persuasively argued book, Meade makes the counterintuitive claim that we can’t address poverty mainly by using microscopes to examine ever more minutely the lives of people who are poor. Rather, we need to use mirrors to examine the hearts and minds of those of us who aren't. Interweaving compelling stories with incisive analysis, Meade makes a convincing and ultimately transformative case. Fair warning: if you are not poor, you will come away with a deep sense of humility toward your own good fortune, but also with a deep sense of responsibility for those who languish in poverty."
"A refreshing discourse on poverty … As an expert in human-centered design, I was struck by Meade’s emotional definition of poverty and by how he encourages the reader, through real-world examples, to explore how their personal experience influences their understanding of poverty.”
“Meade brings his broad perspective and genuine curiosity to this important exploration of poverty. He reminds us that we are all connected to poverty in some way. By validating the wide range of emotions poverty evokes in all of us, Meade breathes humanity into this discourse. A compelling treatise on a critical global issue.”