Aspirations and Attainment in a Low Income Neighborhood

Read the book, “ Ain’t No Makin’ It: Aspirations and Attainment in a Low Income Neighborhood” 3rd Edition by Jay MacLeod

Use the following set of questions to guide your reading of Chapters 1-8 of Ain’t No Makin’ It; Although each of you will ultimately be responsible for knowing the key concepts/material presented in this assigned reading, to facilitate our discussion,You will each submit answers to 3 questions; use the table below to find which questions you are required to answer (based on the first letter of your last name). A paragraph of a few sentences should be sufficient to adequately address each question. Describe the concepts and issues using your own words. DO NOT COPY DIRECTLY FROM THE BOOK.
1. What is the “American Dream” according to MacLeod? Does MacLeod believe in the American Dream? What evidence does he give to prove his point? What is ‘social reproduction’? Explain ‘cultural capital’ and ‘habitus’ in your own words. How does MacLeod see the concepts of cultural capital and habitus as being related to social reproduction? (CHAPTER 1-2)
2. What patterns do you see within the two groups of youth? What contrasts do you see across groups? (CHAPTER 3)
3. MacLeod identifies a number of FAMILY-related reasons that help us understand why the Hallway Hangers and the Brothers are so different in their expectations about the future. What are three family-related factors MacLeod identifies? How did the Hallway Hangers and the Brothers differ on their attitudes about work? Who or what does each group think is responsible for their success or failure at work? (CHAPTER 4-5)


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