By Teresa Gowan
Winner of the 2011 Robert Park Award for the easiest e-book in group and concrete Sociology, American Sociological organization, 2011 Co-winner of the 2011 Mary Douglas Prize for most sensible publication within the Sociology of tradition, American Sociological organization, 2011 When homelessness reemerged in American towns throughout the Nineteen Eighties at degrees no longer obvious because the nice melancholy, it in the beginning provoked surprise and outrage. inside of many years, although, what were perceived as a countrywide obstacle got here to be visible as a nuisance, with early sympathies for the plight of the homeless giving technique to compassion fatigue after which condemnation. Debates round the challenge of homelessness—often set by way of sin, illness, and the failure of the social system—have come to profoundly form how homeless humans live on and make experience in their plights. In Hobos, Hustlers, and Backsliders, Teresa Gowan vividly depicts the lives of homeless males in San Francisco and analyzes the impression of the homelessness at the streets, within the shelters, and on public policy. Gowan exhibits the various varied ways in which males in the street in San Francisco fight for survival, autonomy, and self-respect. dwelling for weeks at a time between homeless men—working side-by-side with them as they accumulated cans, bottles, and scrap steel; aiding them arrange camp; observing and listening as they panhandled and hawked newspapers; and accompanying them into soup kitchens, jails, welfare workplaces, and shelters—Gowan immersed herself of their workouts, their own tales, and their views on existence at the streets. She observes a variety of survival concepts, from the illicit to the industrious, from drug dealing to dumpster diving. She additionally came across that triumphing discussions approximately homelessness and its causes—homelessness as pathology, homelessness as ethical failure, and homelessness as systemic failure—powerfully impact how homeless humans see themselves and their skill to alter their situation. Drawing on 5 years of fieldwork, this robust ethnography of guys residing at the streets of the main liberal urban in the USA, Hobos, Hustlers, and Backsliders, makes transparent that the best way we speak about problems with severe poverty has actual effects for the way we deal with this problem—and for the homeless themselves.