Who’s Responsible for Kids?
This book explores race and the politics of youth in Oakland at the turn of the twenty-first century, with particular emphasis on the debates among parents, community and youth activists, politicians, and policy makers about the city's responses to dangerous and endangered youth. Drawing on the author's ethnographic fieldwork and historical research conducted in 1998–2001 and in 2003–2009, the book examines fears of and fears for black boys and the urgent dilemmas of black parents and activists as they sought to secure safe passage to adulthood for black children, along with the more complex intersections of race, class, and gender that characterized Oakland politics. This introduction discusses neoliberal governance and how neoliberal policies have created new crises of care for children and deep inequalities in childhood, how changing state policies have reconfigured the boundaries between childhood and adulthood, and how Oakland's geography of inequality shaped the politics of youth in the city. It also provides an overview of the chapters in the book.
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