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The Hilltop


Jodie Kirshner’s “Broke” Book Talk Howard U Bookstore: A Story of Detroit’s Housing Crisis

By Jada Orr, Staff Reporter

New York University professor, Jodie Kirshner’s, new book details the lives of seven individuals, displaying a great issue for the historic city of Detroit: a housing crisis. 

Kirshner took questions on her perspective of the unique economic challenges of Detroit and continued to use the seven individuals detailed in the book for reference. Kirshner emphasizes the persistence of these seven individuals and many like them in Detroit to make a way out of no way; nonetheless, the results of the city’s bankruptcy require its solutions include assistance from the same sources tied to Detroit’s disinvestment. 

Accompanying Kirshner for the night was Georgetown professor and author of the new New York Times bestseller Jay-Z: Made In America, Michael Eric Dyson. Dyson, a Detroit native and contributor to the book’s foreword, mentioned the books’ seven individuals and Kirshner’s narrative as “the vibrant will to change” of the Detroit community. 

Kirshner took the time at Howard’s bookstore to sign books but to also talk about how Detroit’s housing issues are not uncommon in many other US cities being affected by global trends and the tech industry’s growth. Many members of the audience posed the question, “What can we do?;” questioning the professors on D.C.’s housing and economic development. Broke compels readers to magnify a crisis happening in many beloved cities across the nation. With personal narratives attached to research and statics, Jodie Kirshner enables a story her readers can familiarize themselves with.


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