Down and Out, on the Road by Kenneth L. Kusmer
The Homeless in American History

No critic rating

Waiting for minimum critic reviews

See 1 Critic Review



Covering the entire period from the colonial era to the late twentieth century, this book is the first scholarly history of the homeless in America. Drawing on sources that include records of charitable organizations, sociological studies, and numerous memoirs of formerly homeless persons, Kusmer demonstrates that the homeless have been a significant presence on the American scene for over two hundred years. He probes the history of homelessness from a variety of angles, showing why people become homeless; how charities and public authorities dealt with this social problem; and the diverse ways in which different class, ethnic, and racial groups perceived and responded to homelessness. Kusmer demonstrates that, despite the common perception of the homeless as a deviant group, they have always had much in common with the average American.
Focusing on the millions who suffered downward mobility, Down and Out, On the Road provides a unique view of the evolution of American society and raises disturbing questions about the repeated failure to face and solve the problem of homelessness.

About Kenneth L. Kusmer

See more books from this Author
\Kenneth L. Kusmer is Professor of History at Temple University.
Published April 24, 2003 by Oxford University Press, USA. 360 pages
Genres: History, Political & Social Sciences. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Down and Out, on the Road

Publishers Weekly

See more reviews from this publication

But Kusmer is at his best when describing the specifics of people's lives, from "the wandering poor" and "sturdy beggars of Colonial times" to the creation of the "tramp" after the Civil War, the social position of penniless Jewish scholars on New York's Lower East Side in the 1890s, and the poli...

| Read Full Review of Down and Out, on the Road: Th...

Rate this book!

Add Review