Disciplining the Poor: Neoliberal Paternalism and the Persistent Power of Race

Paperback | November 30, 2011

byJoe Soss

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Disciplining the Poor explains the transformation of poverty governance over the past forty years—why it happened, how it works today, and how it affects people. In the process, it clarifies the central role of race in this transformation and develops a more precise account of how race shapes poverty governance in the post–civil rights era. Connecting welfare reform to other policy developments, the authors analyze diverse forms of data to explicate the racialized origins, operations, and consequences of a new mode of poverty governance that is simultaneously neoliberal—grounded in market principles—and paternalist—focused on telling the poor what is best for them. The study traces the process of rolling out the new regime from the federal level, to the state and county level, down to the differences in ways frontline case workers take disciplinary actions in individual cases. The result is a compelling account of how a neoliberal paternalist regime of poverty governance is disciplining the poor today.

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Disciplining the Poor explains the transformation of poverty governance over the past forty years—why it happened, how it works today, and how it affects people. In the process, it clarifies the central role of race in this transformation and develops a more precise account of how race shapes poverty governance in the post–civil rights...

Joe Soss is the Cowles Professor for the Study of Public Service in the Hubert H. Humphrey School of Public Affairs at the University of Minnesota. Richard C. Fording is professor in and chair of the Department of Political Science at the University of Alabama. Sanford F. Schram teaches social theory and policy in the Graduate School ...

other books by Joe Soss

Race and the Politics of Welfare Reform
Race and the Politics of Welfare Reform

Kobo ebook|Mar 10 2010

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:368 pages, 9 × 6 × 0.9 inPublished:November 30, 2011Publisher:University Of Chicago PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0226768775

ISBN - 13:9780226768779

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Table of Contents

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

1 INTRODUCTION
2 THE RISE OF NEOLIBERAL PATERNALISM
3 THE COLOR OF NEOLIBERAL PATERNALISM
4 RACE AND SOCIAL CONTROL IN THE STATES, 1960–95
5 RACE AND FEDERALISM IN WELFARE’S DISCIPLINARY TURN
6 STUDYING POVERTY GOVERNANCE IN FLORIDA: WHY AND HOW
7 THE LOCAL POLITICS OF DISCIPLINE
8 THE MARKETIZATION OF POVERTY GOVERNANCE
9 PERFORMANCE, PERVERSITY, AND PUNISHMENT
10 CASEWORKER DISCRETION AND DECISIONS TO DISCIPLINE
11 DOES NEOLIBERAL PATERNALISM MATTER FOR THE POOR?
12 CONCLUSION

REFERENCES
NOTES
INDEX

Editorial Reviews

Disciplining the Poor is a landmark book on the governance of poverty in the United States, the most important such work since Piven and Cloward’s Regulating the Poor, written a generation ago, and an exemplar of multi-method social science research.”