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In Defense of Housing: The Politics of Crisis

In every major city in the world there is a housing crisis. How did this happen and what can we do about it?
Everyone needs and deserves housing. But today our homes are being transformed into commodities, making the inequalities of the city ever more acute. Profit has become more important than social need. The poor are forced to pay more for worse housing. Communities are faced with the violence of displacement and gentrification. And the benefits of decent housing are only available for those who can afford it.

In Defense of Housing is the definitive statement on this crisis from leading urban planner Peter Marcuse and sociologist David Madden. They look at the causes and consequences of the housing problem and detail the need for progressive alternatives. The housing crisis cannot be solved by minor policy shifts, they argue. Rather, the housing crisis has deep political and economic roots—and therefore requires a radical response.

Reviews

  • “Excellent.”
  • “A critical analysis of the nature of the housing crisis within a political economy perspective. The authors highlight a conflict between housing as home and as real estate for profit making and focus upon processes of commodification of housing, power and exploitation, and inequality and injustice in contemporary capitalist society...A significant contribution to urban planning, sociology, and public policy.”
  • “An accessible, jargon-free account of how housing works under capitalism and a clarion call for how we can — and must — change it.”
  • In Defense of Housing clearly lays out the systemic nature of the housing crisis and seamlessly breaks down complicated economic concepts. Madden and Marcuse gently disabuse readers of illusions that the end of the housing crisis is just a policy tweak away.”

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  • Red Sale 2017

    A special Red Flash-Sale, 50% off these selected books (with free worldwide shipping) until Feb 15, midnight (UTC).

    Click here to activate your discount.


     

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    The antidote to the ills of 2016 has to be found in a book. As Verso staffers have found over the course of this year, we turn to books for nourishment and resources to help us make sense of and respond to this monumental year and times to come. As much as we publish books for both these purposes, there are others out there doing much of the same good work. So once again, here's our non-Verso staff picks from Verso staff in London and New York!


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  • Elite Takeovers of the Vertical City

    "Vertical housing has transmuted in a generation into a movement of the elites into super-expensive condo towers."

    Cities around the world are now segregated by height, with the world's wealthiest living at the highest points. It's a new form of class war from above, the politics around which are under-explored.

    In this edited extract from
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    Vertical: The City from Satellites to Bunkers is currently 50% off with free shipping as part of our end-of-year sale.


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