Classic scholarship on the problem of urban inequality tends to highlight the absence of “the market” and the correspondingly problematic and inadequate role of the state in poor communities. This article explores how the relationship between markets and urban poverty has shifted in recent decades. Scholars have become increasingly attentive to the growing influence of market logics and privatization—core features of “neoliberal” change—in areas such as housing, education, federal policy, local politics, employment, and social services. I discuss how this recent work adds to our understanding of how markets shape urban disadvantage. I also argue that—given the rising influence of market logics in city governance—urban scholarship stands to benefit from a deeper engagement with insights from the field of economic sociology. Building bridges between the two subfields, I argue, will help to specify what markets mean in the lives of the urban poor, and also can bring issues of race and poverty to the attention of economic sociologists.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Social Sciences(all)