Planetizen - Urban Planning News, Jobs, and Education

Evicted's Stories of Housing and Poverty Earn the Pulitzer Prize

Housing experts have been reading and passing around "Evicted," by Matthew Desmond, since its release last year. Now the book has won the Pulitzer Prize for general nonfiction.
April 12, 2017, 1pm PDT | James Brasuell | @CasualBrasuell
Share Tweet LinkedIn Email Comments
Daniel Arauz

"Matthew Desmond’s Evicted, which won the Pulitzer Prize in general nonfiction on Monday, is a deeply humanizing and empathetic book about poverty," writes Henry Grabar.

Grabar's post follows the big acknowledgement for the book by noting its influence on housing experts, which has been, as Desmond proclaims, enormous.

It’s not that Desmond pioneered the idea that, as the Pulitzer foundation puts it, evictions “were less a consequence than a cause of poverty.” But he does give it pathos. And that makes a difference. According to Desmond, after Sen. Elizabeth Warren read the chapter in Evicted about how nuisance ordinances were causing women to get evicted for reporting abuse, she drafted a letter to then–Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julián Castro suggesting the department issue guidance to local communities on whether their laws might violate the Fair Housing Act.

Desmond provided an interview for Slate when the book was released in March 2016, and also penned an opinion piece for the New York Times about federal policy related to housing and poverty. Planetizen also included the book in its top books of the year

Share Tweet LinkedIn Email