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Without Keys, My 15 Weeks With the Street People
Code: 9780965346719
Price: $23.95
Compare At: $24.95
Without Keys, My 15 Weeks With the Street People
Description: This Non-Fiction Pulitzer Prize Semi-Finalist book and recipient of 5 MIPA Awards is a story about a middle-class professional woman suddenly finds herself without money and homeless in the middle of a Minneapolis winter. Without Keys is the story of the author’s experiences, and the stories of the people she knew on the street.

People become homeless for many reasons. Alcohol, drug abuse, and mental illness are the stereotypes, but there were also battered women, high-school dropouts and ex-cons that no one would hire, kids who had been thrown out by their parents, the priest who was ready to retire and was told that the order was bankrupt and there were no retirement funds, people who’d been living from paycheck to paycheck and been laid off, and people who’d been bankrupted by medical expenses. A very few were on the street by choice.

This wide-ranging book contains vignettes of dozens of street people. The interviews are reminiscent of those in Studs Terkel's books.

It tells of the struggles to live when you have to carry all your possessions with you, when you can’t call for an appointment because you don’t have a quarter, when there’s no place to receive mail or phone calls, when there’s no way to clean up and dress for a job interview. It tells of how others relate to the homeless, and the dichotomy of being an office worker with a temp job from 8-5, and a street person the rest of the day.

Without Keys contains numerous extracts from a journal kept by McDonough during her experience, and delves into not only the day-to-day details but also the psychological and spiritual struggle, the sociology, and the politics of homelessness. There are also sections dedicated to social workers, church volunteers, nutrition and feeding programs, and public policy.

Recommended for those who enjoy “real-life” vignettes, those interested in the public policy and sociological aspects of homelessness, and students of peace and justice studies. Suitable also for general reading adults and most high school students. American Made in USA. Softcover.

Pulitzer Prize Semi-Finalist and recipient of 5 MIPA Awards
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