UM Common Reading Experience 2019: Evicted

“Matthew Desmond tells stories of people at their most vulnerable. The characters that populate this lyrical book, many of whom are women and children, are our true American heroes, showing great courage and mythic strength against forces that are much larger than the individual. Their stories are gripping and moving—tragic, too. It’s a wonder and a shame that here, in the most prosperous country in the world, a roof over one’s head can be elusive for so many.” 
—Jesmyn Ward, author of Men We Reaped and Salvage the Bones

Book Reviews


Read the Book and Join the Conversation


For campus events, please follow parking rules and use the campus map to locate buildings. 

Fall Convocation: Matthew Desmond, Guest Speaker | Tuesday, August 27, 6:00 p.m. | The Pavillion

Friends, family and the community are invited to join us for Fall Convocation to meet this year's honored guest and author, Matthew Desmond, as he discusses this year's Common Read: Evicted. Bring your copy of the text to be signed after the ceremony. 


Engaging Inclusion through a Class Lens, Dr. becky martinez, Speaker  | Monday, September 9, 6:00 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.  | Student Union Ballroom

Based on numerous narratives of individuals from poor and working-class backgrounds – ranging from students, to multiple levels of administrators and faculty, both tenured and non-tenured, becky martinez, will provide a vivid understanding of how people can experience and straddle class in the middle, upper, or even elitist class contexts of the academy. Martinez will bring social class identity to the forefront of our consciousness, conversations, and behaviors and compels those in the academy to recognize classism and reimagine higher education to welcome and support those from poor and working-class backgrounds. becky martinez will propose ways for both increasing social class consciousness and social class inclusivity in the higher education. 


Using Public Data to Inform Dialogue Around Housing and Poverty: A Workshop with the Center for Population Studies and State Data Center of Mississippi  |  Thursday, September 12, 12:00 p.m. - 12:45 p.m. | J.D. Williams Library Room 106-D

Have you ever wondered how statistical data on housing tenure, costs, and characteristics are collected? Are you interested in learning about official poverty rates and how poverty varies across places? Dr. John Green, Director for the Center for Population Studies, will led this workshop to explore the American Community Survey and the Decennial Census, two publicly available sources that provide comparable data from the local to state and national levels. Participants will also learn about the importance of the upcoming 2020 Census for affordable housing and community development initiatives.


Housing in Oxford: Translating Evicted to Our LOU Community Panel Discussion  | Wednesday, October 16, 6:00 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.  |  Bryant Hall Auditorium Room 209

Do the issues that surface in Evicted exist in Lafayette-Oxford? Come find out. In this panel discussion, you will have the opportunity to met local campus and community partners working to address the housing issues in the LOU community. Panelists: Janice Antonow, Affordable Housing Working Group, Desiree Hensley, UM School of Law Low Income Housing Clinic, and Mary Margaret Andrews, Executive Director, Doors of Hope Transitional Housing Ministry. You will learn about groups doing good work to improve access to affordable housing in the community and find ways that you can get involved.  As part of this event, we invite you to bring donated items to support Doors of Hope Transition Ministries, an agency that provides transitional housing and support to families.

Items needed: toilet paper, paper towels, garbage bags, laundry detergent, dish soap, dishwasher pods/powder, shampoo & conditioner (including African American hair products), soap/body wash, deodorant, razors for women, brushes/combs/hair ties, wash cloths, diapers & pull ups (size 2 and up), baby wipes, cleaning supplies (409, Tylex, Comet, Lysol, furniture polish), sponges.


The Opioid Epidemic: What Should We Do to Address this Issue? Deliberative Forum  | Thursday, November 7, 12:00 p.m. - 12:45 p.m.  | J.D. Williams Library Room 106-D

Since 1996, the opioid epidemic has ravaged communities and claimed more than 200,000 individual lives in the U.S. We now know many of those addictions started as legal prescriptions prescribed as painkillers. Come join us for a delve into the opioid epidemic, learn more about the crisis, explore different approaches to addressing the issue, and participate in community problem-solving. Engage in critical thinking and reflection on this hot topic as we consider paths forward together. No prior experience or knowledge of the issue is required. Erin L. Oeth, Project Manager for Community Engagement, will lead this thought-provoking forum. Watch this trailer to set the stage for the small group discussion. 

Teaching Evicted