Anyon does a great job of providing the historical, social and economic background of Newark, New Jersey and how this history impacted the school climate and culture of the area. It's an impressive body of research which I'm sure took years to assemble. I enjoyed the political and economic policy discussion but it was a rather heavy and dry beginning to the book. I kept waiting for the....and what do we do about it moments. Unfortunately this came at the very end of the book; but even her ideas around rallying for social justice weren't detailed or applicable enough for those of us working around school reform efforts.
There were some glimmers of practical information when she spoke about the Marcy School. However, I am not sure that I believe in generational poverty and if that is true condition. Just by saying there is a culture of poverty in any area or population feels very judgmental and certainly not a strengths-based approach. The title of this book was also a bit off-putting. Ghetto=Urban: I think not.
This is more of an academic treatise versus a what-can-we-do guide.