The Public Assault on America's Children: Poverty, Violence, and Juvenile Injustice / Edition 1

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Overview

Does our society care about its children? This provocative and in-depth examination of violence in the lives of children uncovers the conditions and social policies that perpetuate violence. In addition, this volume forces us to look at other forms of violence confronting children in families, neighborhoods, and schools: The violence of poverty and homelessness. The violence of environmentally induced childhood diseases. The media and legislative "criminalization" of children. The increasing trend toward incarceration of youthful offenders. The pre-eminent contributors to this volume examine these issues from both historical and contemporary public policy perspectives. They address the myths and realities of youth violence and the impact of poverty, race, and gender. Prevailing ideas about punishment and retribution, the role of the state in terms of private or public responsibility, and the developmental needs of the child are all themes that frame the multiple advocacy perspectives presented by these cogent essays.
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Editorial Reviews

VOYA
This timely collection of essays by professors, attorneys, and researchers who are youth advocates will be helpful to school and public librarians serving at-risk youth. Part one explores how poverty can be damaging to children, how it might lead to delinquency, and how the portrayal of teens by the media contributes to stereotypes against youth. Framing Children in the News:The Face and Color of Youth Crime in America by Lynnell Hancock explains the "if it bleeds, it leads" concept in journalism, focusing publicity on teens when they do something bad but ignoring their good deeds, and how this practice has an impact upon poor youth in inner cities who are accused of crimes. Part two, "Schools, Violence, and Zero-Tolerance Policies," makes clear the negative aspects of the zero-tolerance policy. This insight will be especially useful to school personnel. Sasha Polakow-Suransky, in America's Least Wanted:Zero-Tolerance Policies and the Fate of Expelled Students, studies expelled students in Michigan and their struggles to find alternative education. A featured student is fifteen-year-old Kevin, who was expelled from school and had to enter a drug rehabilitation center after being accused of selling LSD although there was no evidence against him. Part three, "Juvenile Injustice," gives detailed descriptions of incarcerated teens, and this section will be particularly useful for librarians serving this population. Throughout most essays, the authors stress that many at-risk youth have become this way due to societal and environmental circumstances that they have been faced with, and that decisions made by adults are to blame for many problems encountered by youth. Index. Charts.Source Notes. 2000, Teachers College Press, 240p, $23.95. Ages Adult. Reviewer:Sheila B. Anderson—VOYA, December 2001 (Vol. 24, No. 5)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780807739839
  • Publisher: Teachers College Press
  • Publication date: 12/1/2000
  • Series: Teaching for Social Justice Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 240
  • Product dimensions: 6.12 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Table of Contents

Foreword
Introduction: Savage Policies: Systemic Violence and the Lives of Children 1
1 A Crucible of Contradictions: Historical Roots of Violence Against Children in the United States 21
2 Poverty and Environmentally Induced Damage to Children 42
3 Poverty and Youth Violence: Not All Risk Factors Are Created Equal 59
4 Framing Children in the News: The Face and Color of Youth Crime in America 78
5 America's Least Wanted: Zero-Tolerance Policies and the Fate of Expelled Students 101
6 Listen First: How Student Perspectives on Violence Can Be Used to Create Safer Schools 130
7 "Look Out, Kid, It's Something You Did": The Criminalization of Children 157
8 Throwaway Children: Conditions of Confinement and Incarceration 188
Afterword 211
About the Editor and the Contributors 213
Index 217
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