Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Harlem Is Dying: Gentrification

Gentrification is a term for the process whereby a relatively "poor" neighborhood is slowly but surely changed into a relatively "affluent" neighborhood.

Basically, rent values increase, poor people move out and wealthy people move in.

This is currently happening to Harlem, New York City.  15 years ago, when I came here to NY, Harlem was overwhelmingly African American.  Things are changing quickly as you see more and more "White" people moving in and pushing "Black" people out.

One result is that "black" businesses and entertainment venues are suffering.  Lenox Lounge is one of the oldest jazz clubs in the city, and because of gentrification, it may close down.

http://gothamist.com/2012/12/06/harlems_lenox_lounge_is_closing.php

1)  How do you feel about a club like this suddenly closing after 70 years?

2)  What can be done to stop gentrification?  Do you think New York City wants to stop gentrification?

3)  When I tell my students about  gentrification, they ask me where the poor people go.  I don't know.  Where do you think the poor people go?

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Yes, I'm the guy who caused the "scandal" in Asia two years ago :P http://www.shoutcastblog.com/2010/05/11/wondergirls-were-mistreated-by-jyp-entertainment/

Yes, I'm also the guy who wrote the very funny ESL book:  New York City Sucks, But You'll Wanna Live Here Anyway http://www.amazon.com/Sucks-Youll-Wanna-Anyway-ebook/dp/B004TSPAQS





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