On October 28th, I attended the All Stars Project President’s Roundtable hosted by Gabrielle Kurlander. Kathryn Edin, one of the authors of our current selection, $2.00 a Day: Living on Almost Nothing in America was the the guest speaker for “A New Conversation About Poverty” with discussants Dr. Lenora Fulani and Dr. Bonny Gildin.
Dr. Edin gave an opening presentation on her ongoing research in Baltimore, following the young people of families that were given the opportunity to move from the highest poverty neighborhood to an average neighborhood in the city. She has been interviewing and visiting with these young people over many years. She outlines the “developmental effect” — when young people were given a broader exposure to a range of opportunities… She commented that as a poverty researcher, she had been “blind to the role and importance” of the arts to kids lives until this project.
Dr. Edin’s presentation was followed by a very rich conversation amongst the panelists and audience. Kathryn spoke about how we have moralized poverty and see it as a moral failing. Our public policy, Edin says relates to the poor “in the meanest possible way.” She talked about the work of the All Stars Project as bringing dignity and a voice to the poor and how she is working to establish the power of the “dignity effect” in her research.
At the end of the conversation, Dr. Lenora Fulani shared her view that we have to teach people to love the poor. I could not agree more!
You can watch Dr. Edin’s opening presentation at the All Stars Project President’s Roundtable here or below: