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board, Justine Pulier, who just lost her husband, by the way,
Shad Pulier, invited me down to the office of the Field Foundation
to share with me an idea they had.
I'll put it very briefly. Les felt that the Field Foundation
could make more of an impact in the use of its funds by
concentrating on the particular problems of a project, rather
than distributing grants over a large number of projects. And
he said that what they were concerned with was the urban problem,
and I think he used the term “urban decay, “but with particular
emphasis on the ghettoes. And he had read YOUTH IN THE GHETTO.
I don't know whether he had read DARK GHETTO or not. But the concept
of a sense of powerlessness, you know, lack of any control over
their own destiny of the underclassed, which I developed in
DARK GHETTO, apparently made some kind of impact upon him. And he
and Justine wanted to explore with me whether I would be willing
to accept the invitation to develop, organize and operate a
new type of agency that would in effect seek to use the skills,
the perspective, the methods, and I presume also the style of the
social scientist, in seeking to affect social policy on behalf of
the powerless groups in our cities.
Well, a more rational person would have said, “Hurray,”
you know,” I want to do it, yeah, I'll jump at it.”
I spent my first two meetings with Justine and Les trying
to convince them of the hopelessness of this. The fact that
it's an exceelent idea, on paper, but I'd just come through
HARYOU. I don't think I mentioned Social Dynamics Research Center.
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