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From the PublisherClarence E. Page columnist, Chicago Tribune What makes us Americans move so much? Why has so much "black flight" followed so much "white flight"? Who's next? And what have we lost when we leave "the old neighborhood" behind? In exploring provocative questions like these, Ray Suarez offers us Americans a lively, authoritative, and unsentimental journey into the interior of our restless national soul. With a hard-edged reporter's insight and humor, The Old Neighborhood takes a top-down and bottom-up look at the perceptions and realities of urban and suburban American life and points the way to the threshold of a new century. I have been waiting years for a book like this to come along. It was worth the wait.
Robert B. Reich University Professor of social and economic policy, Brandeis University, and former U.S. Secretary of Labor No one hears more clearly than Ray Suarez the hollow echoes of America's cities, or records more compassionately the stories of those who have abandoned them and those who have been left behind.
Roberto Suro author of Strangers Among Us: How Latino Immigration Is Transforming America Ray Suarez has added an important new chapter to the history of the American city with this revealing portrayal of the flight away from the urban center. Millions of listeners already know of his great skills as an interviewer, and with this book we discover that Suarez is also a graceful writer and an incisive observer of modern America.
Witold Rybczynski author of City Life: Urban Expectations in a New World Ray Suarez understands that there are no easy answers to the problems of America's declining cities. What he does in this provocative book is to record the voices of urban dwellers — those who stayed and those who left.
Bruce Katz The Brookings Institution Ray Suarez has written a tough and passionate account of the fate of America's older cities over the past three decades. By talking to urban and suburban families, he draws out the real motivations behind the flight from cities: perceptions and realities about schools and crime and the persistence of racial and ethnic tensions. Suarez offers a stark picture of the costs of declining cities — to the nation, to communities, to individuals — and counters the notion that these cities have experienced a substantial revival in the 1990s.