Affordable Housing: A Long History | Newberry

Affordable Housing: A Long History

Monday, April 26, 2021


The Newberry

D. Bradford Hunt, Loyola University
Newberry Teachers' Consortium

Shelter is an essential need, but has never been a human right in American society. Instead, housing is a commodity left largely – though not entirely – to the market. Moreover, housing policies in the U.S. have often had the effect of dividing Americans by race or class, rather than uniting us. This seminar will explore the problem of affordable housing in American history, starting in the 19th century. Readings, a lecture, and discussions will range widely, engaging the following topics: progressive reform efforts to improve housing conditions; utopian ideas to house the masses; federal policies that supported homeownership but also led to segregation and massive disparities in wealth; public housing’s rise and fall in the U.S. (especially in Chicago); and current thinking on affordable housing in the 21st century. We will interrogate these topics through the lenses of race, class, and gender as we examine various policies and cultural norms.

Cost and Registration Information 

Newberry Teachers’ Consortium participants may register for this seminar through their designated school administration contact, as space permits. Individual educators without a subscription package at their home institution may register for this seminar by purchasing an individual seminar slot at the time of registration. Registration for all NTC seminars opens Friday, September 11, 2020. For more information about NTC subscription packages, please contact Cate Harriman, Teacher & Student Programs Coordinator, at

A link to the assigned pre-readings for the seminars, as well as instructions for logging onto the Zoom session, will be distributed to participants via email.

If you believe you are registered for this seminar but have not received an email confirmation or reminder, please contact Teacher Programs staff at