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Poverty: lecture and discussion with Dr. Beth Merenstein

Wednesday, September 25 at 6:30 pm - 8:00 pm

This fall, we’re hosting a series funded by the  Avon Greater Together Community Fund, in collaboration with the Hartford Foundation for Public Giving and Avon Friends for Equity.

Join us for a discussion and lecture featuring Matthew Desmond’s book, Poverty.  This event will be led by Dr. Beth Merenstein, with audience questions moderated by Carrie Firestone.

Copies of Poverty are available at the reference desk on the first floor of the Avon Library. Please read before this event!

About Poverty, by America: In this landmark book, acclaimed sociologist Matthew Desmond draws on history, research, and original reporting to show how affluent Americans knowingly and unknowingly keep poor people poor. Those of us who are financially secure exploit the poor, driving down their wages while forcing them to overpay for housing and access to cash and credit. We prioritize the subsidization of our wealth over the alleviation of poverty, designing a welfare state that gives the most to those who need the least. And we stockpile opportunity in exclusive communities, creating zones of concentrated riches alongside those of concentrated despair. Some lives are made small so that others may grow.

Dr. Beth Merenstein is the Interim Associate Vice President for Community Engagement and Experiential Learning, as well the Executive Director of the Center for Community Engagement and Social Research (CCESR).  Dr Merenstein earned a B.A. in English with a concentration in Aesthetics and Critical Theory from Clark University. She later received an M.A. and Ph.D. in Sociology from the University of Connecticut.  She joined the faculty at Central in 2004 as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Sociology and was subsequently promoted to Associate Professor and Professor. She has served as Acting Chair of the Sociology department, University Curriculum Chair, Assistant to the Dean, Associate Dean, and Presidential Fellow.  Dr. Merenstein is active in curriculum development with a particular emphasis on equity in education and was instrumental in the creation of the Equity, Justice, and Inclusion addition to the University’s general education curriculum.  She has published numerous evaluation reports for local community organizations, articles in peer-reviewed journals, and a book on Immigration and Race (2008)

Carrie Firestone is an educator and children’s literature author. She co-founded ForwardCT, a grassroots community service and advocacy organization, with State Representative Eleni Kavros DeGraw, and serves as the Chair of the Avon Clean Energy Commission. A graduate of William Smith College and Columbia Teachers College, Carrie’s lifelong work centers around efficient, equity-based community work. Learn more at www.carriefirestonebooks.com

Free to attend. Please register, so we can set up the community room with appropriate seating.


Wednesday, September 25
6:30 pm - 8:00 pm
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AFPL Adult Programs
860-673-9712 ext 4
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Community Room
281 Country Club Road
Avon, CT 06001 United States
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