Stigma of Urban Poverty History Term Paper

Download this Term Paper in word format (.doc)

Note: Sample below may appear distorted but all corresponding word document files contain proper formatting

Excerpt from Term Paper:

The public face of stigma involves the general public's negative beliefs, feelings and behaviours directed toward those with a stigma" (¶ 4). Public stigma may contribute to a cycle of poverty by: a) Employers discriminating against obese individuals or those who may be HIV-infected or mentally ill. b) Being poor, per se, may contribute to even more public stigmatization.

Self-stigma and public stigma closely connect, Reeder and Pryor (2008) stress . The degree an individual perceives that his/her employers, family, family, and landlords possess stigmatizing attitudes; he/she will likely experience the pain of self-stigma. One's awareness of public stigma frequently promotes self-stigma.

A stigma, similar to a disease may spread from one individual to another. The individual who decides to affiliate with a member of a stigmatized group may acquire a courtesy stigma. In a sense, as the individual gains admission into the stigmatized category, both the stigmatized group's members as well as those outside the group treat the individual as if the stigma taints him/her. Josh Otlin (2008), ethics, history, and economics educator in Hudson, Massachusetts, asserts that the majority of individuals stigmatized as the urban poor do not deliberately desire nor plan to be poor; that they would prefer not to be the object of charity.

In the journal article, "Left out: Perspectives on social exclusion and inclusion across income groups," Miriam Stewart, et al. (2008), Faculty of Nursing and School of Public Health, University of Alberta, Canada, explains that social exclusion may stimulate a person to experience low self-esteem, internalize blame, and feel powerlessness. Social exclusion "refers to deeply embedded societal processes whereby certain groups are unable to fully participate in and benefit from major societal institutions, and experience economic, political and social deprivations and inequalities" (Stewart, et al. ¶ 2). Because of being socially excluded, a person may deliberately avoid participating in community life. Processes of social exclusion may also produce corresponding adverse affects on the socially stigmatized, excluded individual's health and well-being.

In the journal article, "The causes of poverty: thinking critically about a key economic issue," Otlin (2008) stresses that poor individuals in the U.S. not only experience indignity because of stigmatization, they also suffer. They also live one illness or accident away from becoming completely desperate. Many live to survive day-to-day, meal-to-meal, at times, unsure whether they will have a place to live and/or food to eat. "This vulnerability," some individuals assert, "causes intense stress, ultimately leading to hopelessness. As a result, social problems, including domestic abuse, drug and alcohol addiction, and crime, are widespread among the poor" (Otlin, Evan Section, ¶ 3). Other individuals oppose the contention that the external components contribute to stigmatization of urban poverty or poverty per se. Some argue that to overcome poverty one simply needs a "willingness to work hard, exercise self-discipline, and improve themselves… [that] & #8230;a failure of individual responsibility is the cause of poverty in the U.S." (Otlin, Barbara Section, ¶ 1). Some argue that taking money from people who work regularly to earn money and giving it to the individuals who for whatever reason, including drugs; alcohol; etc. To work hard enough to support themselves clearly constitutes a wrong practice.


Seeking to understand and explain urban poverty and its stigmatization, the literature reveals, serves as a significant first step to begin to assert ideas to develop social policies and practices to deter the growing contemporary problem. Understanding may lead to ideas to better counter the problem as well as hopeless attitudes and/or standards the urban poor may experience. Accurately identifying and measuring poverty, the writer asserts, may also constitute a critical first step challenge cycle of urban poverty as well as its stigma.

Whatever the reason for the stigmatization of urban poverty, as well as whether poverty per se evolves from businesses' greed, exploitation, and discrimination or from the individual's failures of individual responsibility will likely provide material for ongoing debates as long as a society characterizes a part of its community as poor. The negative consequences that frequently evolve from and/or accompany urban poverty as well as its stigmatization, however, do not only adversely affect the poor. As the stigma, no matter the object of the stigmatization, belittles the person, an inherent part of society, the writer asserts - each person in society, in a sense, also becomes poorer.


Jeanine B. et al. Poverty and Social Assistance in Transition Countries Journal of Comparative

Economics, Volume 29, Issue 1, Pages 188-189

Katsiaouni, O. & Gorniak, J. (2001). Globalization and rural poverty in transition economies.

Paper for Expert Group Meeting on Globalisation and Poverty Reduction: Can th Rural Poor Benefit from Globalisation? organised by Division for Social Policy and Development, United Nations, 8-9 November 2001, New York.

Molnar, J.J. et al. (2001). Private food assistance in a small metropolitan area: Urban resources and rural needs. Conner 28 J. Soc. & Soc. Welfare 187 Retrieved on April 16

2010 from the United Nations Cyberschoolbus website;

Otlin, J. (2008). The causes of poverty: thinking critically about a key economic issue. Social Education. National Council for the Social Studies. Retrieved May 05, 2010 from HighBeam Research:

Plutzer, E. (2010). Do Highly Exclusive Social Welfare Programs Increase Political Inequality?

A Comparative Analysis of the 50 U.S. States. Social Science Research Center Berlin

(WZB). Retrieved May 5, 2010 from

Reeder, G. & Pryor, J. (2008). Dual Psychological Processes Underlying Public Stigma and the Implications for Reducing Stigma. Mens Sana Monographs. Medknow Publications Pvt.

Ltd. Retrieved May 05, 2010 from HighBeam Research:

Stewart, M., et al. (2008). Left out: Perspectives on social exclusion and inclusion across income groups. Health Sociology Review. eContent Management Pty Ltd. Retrieved May 05,

2010 from HighBeam Research:

Tickamyer, a.R. (1996) Public Policy and Private Lives: Social and Spatial Dimensions of Women's Poverty and Welfare Policy in the United States;. 84 Ky. L.J. 721

Teitz, M.B. & Chapple, K. (1998). The causes of inner-city poverty: Eight hypotheses in search of reality. Cityscape: A Journal of Policy Development and Research. Volume 3, Number


Zastrow, C. (2009). Introduction to social work and social welfare: Empowering people.

Belmont, CA: Cengage Learning.

Ziliak, J.P.…[continue]

Cite This Term Paper:

"Stigma Of Urban Poverty History" (2010, May 07) Retrieved December 7, 2016, from

"Stigma Of Urban Poverty History" 07 May 2010. Web.7 December. 2016. <>

"Stigma Of Urban Poverty History", 07 May 2010, Accessed.7 December. 2016,

Other Documents Pertaining To This Topic

  • Intolerance American History Is Unfortunately

    The Japanese internment camps are but one manifestation of historic intolerance in the United States. The ghettoization of Jews and other perceived undesirable European groups during the early 20th century also proves that many American urban centers were founded on principles of intolerance. The geographic and cultural landscape of the United States continues to reflect intolerance: in the ways many if not most American cities remain visibly segregated into

  • Economic Sociology

    Shame in My Game: The Economic Sociology of Poverty Poverty in America is such a politicized topic that it can be difficult for even the most neutral people to discuss. Part of the reason that poverty is so political is that most Americans have a romanticized notion of the free-market system and believe that the American dream is easily achieved if one applies sufficient hard work. However, the reality is

  • Social Entrepreneurship the Nuba Water

    Western sanitation facilities, for example, are expected to be white, clean, and indoors. In the United States, for example, we expect every home to have its own faucet and running water. In Sudan, however, the expectations for design and infrastructure are different. By working directly in local communities and employing residents to help with every phase of planning and construction, the NWP is able to capture local design features.

  • Illegal Immigration it Has Been

    8% of U.S. households were headed by an immigrant and received 6.7% of all cash benefits; by 1990, 8.4% of households were headed by an immigrant and received 13.1% of all cash benefits (Borjas, 1995, pp. 44-46). Immigrants in different categories (both legal and illegal) have been eligible to receive certain welfare benefits. Legal immigrants are eligible after three to five years of residence, though asylum applicants and refugees are eligible

  • Metal Health Mental Issue 2226 Mental Health

    Metal Health Mental Issue 2226 Mental Health Researches indicate that poverty and mental illness are correlated with each other in a broader spectrum. This research paper is commissioned on the basis of two exhaustively researched hypotheses: H1 Poverty can cause mental illness and H2 Mental illness is subjected to poverty. Throughout this research paper, these two hypotheses have been investigated from scholarly academic resources. At the end of the proposed research it has

  • Childhood Hunger and Structional Functionalism Childhood Hunger

    Childhood Hunger and Structional Functionalism Childhood Hunger and Structural-Functionalism Theory In this essay, I have discussed about childhood hunger. I have described how poverty, hunger, and lack of education play a major role in childhood hunger. I have tried to link low income, nutrition and education with childhood hunger and their long-term effects. I have tried to correlate and integrate all these topics and have presented a macro-level perspective. In the end,

  • Social Issue Alcohol Drugs Consider a Social

    Social issue alcohol drugs consider a social issue interested. It human freedom, sexuality, deviance, crime, social mobility, poverty, education, aging, similar issues. Select a specific social issue investigate assignment. Social issue: Drug abuse The social problem of drug addiction is a long-standing one, yet the causes of addiction and the best way to treat addiction still remain difficult questions to answer. One contentious issue pertains to whether addiction is a 'crime' or

Read Full Term Paper
Copyright 2016 . All Rights Reserved