Pages Bookshop & the Detroit Equity Action Lab Present Jodie Adams Kirshner

We are thrilled to host author, professor, and researcher Jodie Adams Kirshner at Wayne State University Law School's Spencer M. Partrich Auditorium for her new book, Broke: Hardship and Resilience in a City of Broken Promises.  

Anna Clark writes, "In Broke, Jodie Adams Kirshner gives sustained attention to the way ordinary people in Detroit are making do. . . Leaders tout Detroit’s post-bankruptcy comeback, pointing to improved commercial investment and public services. But in “Broke,” Kirshner shows the vast intersecting challenges yet to be faced." 

Jodie will be joined in conversation by two life-long Detroiters, profiled in the book and will have a moderated conversation with Stephen Henderson the host of WDET's Detroit Today. An audience Q&A will follow.

This event is free and open to the public. However, please use the "Buy Tickets" button below to guarantee yourself a spot. There is both street and structure parking close by.

All attendees who purchase their copy of Broke in advance from Pages will have the opportunity to meet and get their books signed by Jodie before the event at 6pm. Order your books buy clicking on the "Buy Tickets" button below. 

Can't make the event but still want a signed copy? Click HERE to order a copy of Broke.


About Broke:

Described by the Kirkus Review as "[An] eye-opening and sometimes heartbreaking narrative...A significant work of social sciences and urban studies", Broke is a galvanizing, narrative account of a city’s bankruptcy and its aftermath told through the lives of seven valiantly struggling Detroiters.

Bankruptcy and the austerity it represents have become a common "solution" for struggling American cities. What do the spending cuts and limited resources do to the lives of city residents? In Broke, Jodie Adams Kirshner follows seven Detroiters as they navigate life during and after their city's bankruptcy. Reggie loses his savings trying to make a habitable home for his family. Cindy fights drug use, prostitution, and dumping on her block. Lola commutes two hours a day to her suburban job. For them, financial issues are mired within the larger ramifications of poor urban policies, restorative negligence on the state and federal level and—even before the decision to declare Detroit bankrupt in 2013—the root causes of a city’s fiscal demise.

Like Matthew Desmond’s Evicted, Broke looks at what municipal distress means, not just on paper but in practical—and personal—terms. More than 40 percent of Detroit’s 700,000 residents fall below the poverty line. Post-bankruptcy, they struggle with a broken real estate market, school system, and job market—and their lives have not improved.

Detroit is emblematic. Kirshner makes a powerful argument that cities—the economic engine of America—are never quite given the aid that they need by either the state or federal government for their residents to survive, not to mention flourish. Success for all America’s citizens depends on equity of opportunity.

About Jodie Adams Kirshner:

Jodie Adams Kirshner is a research professor at New York University. Previously on the law faculty at Cambridge University, she also teaches bankruptcy law at Columbia Law School. She is an elected member of the American Law Institute, past term member of the Council on Foreign Relations, and a technical advisor to the Bank for International Settlements. She received a prestigious multi-year grant from the Kresge Foundation to research this book.

Until 2014, Kirshner was a law professor at Cambridge University, where she also served as the deputy director of the Cambridge LLM program, the deputy director of the Cambridge Centre for Corporate and Commercial Law, and as a fellow of Peterhouse College, Cambridge. Kirshner received her undergraduate degree from Harvard University and graduate degrees in law and in journalism from Columbia University. She lives in New York City.

About the Detroit Equity Action Lab

We are thrilled to be partnering with the Detroit Equity Action Lab (DEAL) on this event. DEAL is an innovative hub housed in the Damon Keith Center for Civil Rights in the Wayne State University Law School community-driven research, programming and media — raises the profile of racial justice issues, connects community experts to build collective power and amplifies the voices of Detroiters. You can learn more about their work and keep up with their stories on their website and Facebook page.

Event date: 
Thursday, December 5, 2019 - 7:00pm to 8:30pm
Event address: 
471 West Palmer
Detroit, MI 48202