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October 29, 2013


Dream Foreclosed Poster

A Dream Foreclosed:
Black America and the Fight for a Place to Call Home

When: Tuesday October 29, 6:30 - 8:30
Where: UIC School of Public Health Auditorium, 1603 West Taylor Street

Series: Brown Bag Series Co-Sponsored with Radical Public Health, Metropolitan Tenants Organization, Minority Students for the Advancement of Public Health, Public Health Student Association, UIC Department of Urban Planning and Policy

The foreclosure crisis has had devastating effects on our nation's public health, creating a "public hell" for many. Across the country, ten million Americans have been thrown out of their homes, and predatory lending and the resultant legal battles have rendered these people homeless and their homes people-less. In Chicago alone, more than 116,000 individuals were homeless during the 2012–13 school year—an increase of more than 10% from the year before, according to the Chicago Coalition for the Homeless.


For African Americans—who have been hit the hardest by foreclosure and eviction—this is just one more chapter in a long history of landlessness. After generations of struggle for basic human and civil rights, many are now finding it difficult to hold onto the right to own the most basic and necessary property: a home.


On Tuesday, October 29, join us at UIC's School of Public Health to hear the stories of African American home liberators who were threatened with foreclosure and eviction and decided to fight back: challenging the banks, organizing with their neighbors, and occupying vacant and foreclosed homes. Laura Gottesdiener, author of A Dream Foreclosed: Black America and the Fight for a Place to Call Home, will present stories from her book, and local housing activists, some featured in her book, will share the history, politics, and future of the struggle for the community control of land.


Panelists will include:

  • Martha Biggs and Ebonee Stevenson, from the Chicago Anti-Eviction Campaign
  • Michael Donley and Carmilla Manzanet, from Communities United Against Foreclosure and Eviction (CUAFE)
  • Laura Gottesdiener, author of A Dream Foreclosed: Black America and the Fight for a Place to Call Home

Reviews of A Dream Foreclosed: Black America and the Fight for a Place to Call Home:

  • “These compelling and lucidly told stories are about people unwilling to stop imagining what it means to have a secure home. They reveal that the stakes in the fight for housing justice have never been higher: home is about the kind of democracy we want to have, and even what kind of planet we want to live on. A riveting book.”
    —NAOMI KLEIN, author of The Shock Doctrine
  • “The bare statistics on foreclosures are shattering enough. But the enormity of the crime strikes home vividly in the heart-rending accounts of those who are brutally thrown out of their modest homes—for African Americans particularly, almost all they have—then survive in the streets, struggle on, and sometimes even regain something of what was stolen from them thanks to the courageous and inspiring work of the home liberation activists, now reinforced by the Occupy movement. All recounted with historical depth and analytic insight in this most valuable study.”

This event is free and open to the public. RSVP here.