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What if we are approaching the concept of poverty in the wrong way? What if by changing the way we fight poverty we could make more of a difference in peoples' lives? Dr. Ranity Ray addresses these questions and others, the answers to which are the results of spending three years in an economically marginalized community. Can we eliminate poverty by targeting drugs, gangs, violence, and teen parenthood? Many policy makers, community organizers, and social scientists tend to think so. In this talk highlighting a surprising story about poverty, sociologist and author Ranita Ray explains how these things reinforces racial hierarchies, makes things harder for those growing up in poverty, and strengthens the cycle of poverty instead of breaking it.
Ranita Ray grew up in a boarding school in the foothills of the Himalayas near the India-Nepal border. After spending three years in an economically marginalized community she calls “Port City,” Ranita published The Making of a Teenage Service Class: Poverty and Mobility in an American City—a book that challenges dominant ideas about poor communities and offers novel ways of tackling poverty. Ranita hopes the insights from her research will allow us to shed new light on the social reproduction of poverty. This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community. Learn more at https://www.ted.com/tedx