University of Wisconsin-Madison alumnus Matthew Desmond won the Pulitzer Prize today for his book, “Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City.”
Desmond, who earned his master’s and doctoral degrees from the UW-Madison, won the Pulitzer Prize in General Nonfiction for a book based on research conducted in Milwaukee.
“Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City” studies the relationship between eviction and poverty through the stories of eight Milwaukee families, black and white, and two landlords involved with them. The book was the 2016-17 selection for Go Big Read, UW-Madison’s common-reading program.
“Evicted” is a powerful analysis of a little-known epidemic affecting people across the country living in poverty. Milwaukee, a city of roughly 105,000 renter households, sees about 16,000 adults and children evicted in an average year, Desmond’s research shows. This is equivalent to 16 eviction cases a day.
“Providing stable housing and lowering evictions is a human capital investment analogous to education or job training – one that has the potential to decrease poverty and homelessness and stabilize families, schools and neighborhoods,” Desmond says.