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This painting is called Ambrose and Theodosius, by Antony Van Dyck from 1619-1620. It depicts Ambrose, bishop of Milan in the 4th century, refusing to admit Emperor Theodosius to a service. Ambrose was demanding that the Emperor repent for ordering the Massacre of Thessalonica, where 7,000 people were killed. Eight months passed. Ambrose finally admitted Theodosius only when the Emperor made a law that death sentences would require a thirty day lag before execution so as to allow reconsideration. This event was significant in the history of church-state relations.

Informative or Intriguing:

Wealth Inequality


Kevin Phillips, Wealth and Democracy: A Political History of the American Rich


Jonathan Kozol, Shame of the Nation: Restoring Apartheid Schooling in America


Earl Shorris, As a Weapon in the Hands of the Restless Poor (Harper's Magazine, Sep 1997)


Wealth Inequality in America (6 minute youtube video, Nov 20, 2012)


Wealth Inequality (


Pew Charitable Trusts, Economic Mobility Project


The Racial Gap Increases Fourfold, Institute on Assets and Policy at Brandeis, May 2010


The U.S. Income Gap Triples, 1979 - 2007


Joseph Stiglitz, The Great Divide (NY Times, 2012 - 2014), a series on inequality — the haves, the have-nots and everyone in between — in the United States and around the world, and its implications for economics, politics, society and culture


Stacey Patton, The Ph.D. Now Comes With Food Stamps (Chronicle of Higher Education, May 6, 2012)


Heather Stewart, Wealth Doesn't Trickle Down - It Just Floods Offshore, Study Reveals (The Guardian, Jul 21, 2012)


Kenneth Rapoza, The China Miracle: A Rising Wealth Gap (Forbes, Jan 20, 2013)


Associated Press, Silicon Valley Adds Tech Jobs, Homeless (FoxNews, Mar 11, 2013)


The U.S. Income Gap Highest Ever (Boston Globe, Sep 28, 2010)


Joseph Stiglitz, Equal Opportunity, Our National Myth (NY Times, Feb 16, 2013)


Scott Timberg, Jason Lanier: The Internet Destroyed the Middle Class (Salon, May 12, 2013)


UBC Media Release, Poverty Impairs Cognitive Function (UBC News, Aug 29, 2013)


Elizabeth Warren, The Coming Collapse of the Middle Class (youtube video, Feb 1, 2008)


Jason DeParle, Harder for Americans to Rise from Lower Rungs (NY Times, Jan 4, 2012)


Dorothy Brown, How Home Ownership Keeps Blacks Poorer Than Whites (Forbes, Dec 10, 2012)


Chuck Collins, 99 to 1: How Wealth Inequality Is Wrecking the World and What We Can Do about It (2012)


Chuck Collins, Wealth Inequality, Inherited Advantage, and Declining Mobility (, May 29, 2013)


C.W. and A.J.K.D., Get a Life (The Economist, Sep 24, 2013) on working hours and productivity


Richard Reeve, The Glass Floor Problem (NY Times, Sep 29, 2013) about social mobility


Derek Thompson, How America's Marriage Crisis Makes Income Inequality So Much Worse (The Atlantic, Oct 2, 2013)


Annie Lowrey, Switzerland's Proposal to Pay People for Being Alive (NY Times, Nov 12, 2013)


Jenny Shank, Utah Is on Track to End Homelessness by 2015 With This One Simple Idea (Nation Swell, Dec 19, 2013)


Dylan Matthews, Everything You Need to Know About the War on Poverty (Washington Post wonkblog, Jan 8, 2014)


Economist, Sex, Brains, and Inequality: How Sexual Equality Increases the Gap Between Rich and Poor Households (Economist, Feb 6, 2014)


Mark Gongloff, Inequality Is So Bad Even the Super-Rich Are Getting Left Behind (Huffington Post, Feb 11, 2014)


Robin Hayes, Why Ivy League Schools Are So Bad at Economic Diversity (The Atlantic, Feb 27, 2014)


Paul Krugman, Why We're in a New Gilded Age (NY Times review of books, Mar 8, 2014)


Thomas Frank, There is No Meritocracy: It's Just the 1% and the Game is Rigged (Slate, Mar 16, 2014)


Richard Florida, The U.S. Cities Where the Poor Are Most Segregated From Everyone Else (The Atlantic Cities, Mar 24, 2014)


Mike Konczal, The Voluntarism Fantasy: Conservatives dream of returning to a world where private charity fulfilled all public needs, but that world never existed (Democracy Journal, Spring 2014)


Andrew Bouve, What if Walmart Paid Its Employees More? (video, Apr 3, 2014)


Christopher Bergland, Social Disadvantage Creates Genetic Wear and Tear (Psychology Today, Apr 15, 2014)


Maxwell Strachan, The U.S. Is Even More Unequal Than You Realized (Huffington Post, May 1, 2014)


Mark Mellman, Why the Poor Can Have "Things" But Can't Escape Poverty (blog, May 16, 2014)


Nick Hanauer, The Pitchforks Are Coming...For Us Plutocrats (Politico, Jul/Aug 2014)


Mark Gongloff, The South is Essentially a Solid, Grim Block of Poverty (Huffington Post, Jul 2, 2014)


John Oliver, Wealth Inequality (Last Week Tonight, Jul 13, 2014)


Tyler Cowen, Income Inequality Is Not Rising Globally. It's Falling. (NY Times, Jul 19, 2014)


Daniel Little, Tyler Cowen on Global Inequality (Understanding Society blog, Jul 20, 2014)


Nicholas Kristof, An Idiot's Guide to Inequality (NY Times, Jul 23, 2014)


Stephen Mihm, Where Slavery Thrived, Inequality Rules Today (Boston Globe, Aug 24, 2014)


Paul Krugman, Republicans Aren't Willing to Do the One Thing That Would Help Solve Poverty (Business Insider, Sep 22, 2014)


Charles Marohn, The Conservative Case Against the Suburbs (The American Conservative, Oct 15, 2014)


Pedro Nicolaci Da Costa, Janet Yellen Decries Widening Income Inequality Central Bank Chief Says Wealth Disparity Could Be Impeding Economic Mobility (Wall Street Journal, Oct 19, 2014)


Linda Tirado, Why Poor People Stay Poor (Slate, Dec 5, 2014)


Sally Kohn, Stop denying the gender pay gap exists. Even Jennifer Lawrence was shortchanged. (Washington Post, Dec 17, 2014)


Faith Karimi, Oxfam: Top 1% Will Own More Than Everyone Else (CNN, Jan 19, 2015)


Economist, America’s New Aristocracy: As the importance of intellectual capital grows, privilege has become increasingly heritable (Economist, Jan 24, 2015)


Quoctrung Bui, The Fall and Rise of U.S. Inequality, In 2 Graphs (NPR, Feb 11, 2015)


Peter R. Orszag, To Fight Inequality, Tax Land (Bloomberg View, Mar 3, 2015)


Ana Swanson, Max Roser, The Source of American Inequality in One Graph (Washington Post, Mar 9, 2015) on the Gini coefficient


Benjamin Schwarz, Building an Underclass (The American Conservative, Mar 25, 2015) How urban planners helped demolish Britain's working families


Laura Shin, The Racial Wealth Gap: Why A Typical White Household Has 16 Times The Wealth Of A Black One (Forbes, Mar 26, 2015) homeownership #1; education #2; labor markets #3


Christopher Jencks, The War on Poverty - Was It Lost? (The New York Review of Books, Apr 2, 2015)


Connor Kilpatrick, Let Them Eat Privilege: Focusing On Privilege Diverts Attention Away from the Real Villains (Jacobin Magazine, Apr 11, 2015)


Orion Jones, For Biggest Economic Bang, Give Middle Class a Windfall (Big Think blog, Apr 2015)


Ana Patricia Munoz,, The Color of Wealth in Boston (Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, Apr 27, 2015)


Richard Rothstein, From Ferguson to Baltimore: The Fruits of Government-Sponsored Segregation (Economic Policy Institute, Apr 29, 2015)


Annie Lowrey, David Brooks Isn't Buying Your Excuses, Poor People (New York Magazine, May 1, 2015)


Gregor Aisch,, The Best and Worst Places to Grow Up: How Your Area Compares (NY Times, May 3, 2015)


Robert Reich, America's Economy is a Nightmare of Our Own Making (Salon, May 3, 2015)


Terrence McCoy, Meet the Outsider Who Accidentally Solved Chronic Homelessness (Washington Post, May 6, 2015)


Steve Roth, No: Rich People Don't Work More (Asymptosis blog, May 11, 2015)


Jason Furman, Smart Social Programs (NY Times, May 11, 2015)


Sam Fleming and Demetri Sevastopulo, US Economic Recovery Masks Tale of Many Cities (Financial Times, May 26, 2015)


Dean Mosiman and Doug Erickson, Minnesota Provides Ample Funding, Leadership, Direct Approach on Homelessness (Wisconsin State Journal, Jun 5, 2016)


Press Association, Well-Off Families Create Glass Floor to Ensure Children's Success, Says Study (The Guardian, Jul 26, 2015)


Stan Sorscher, Inequality — “X” Marks the Spot — Dig Here (Huffington Post, Jul 29, 2015) about cultural change around 1975, but what about legal?


Mike Konczal, How the Rich Can Keep Their Homes, Businesses, Artwork, and Wealth Tax-Free—Forever (The Nation, Jul 30, 2015)


Sam Fleming and Shawn Donnan, America's Middle Class Meltdown: Core Shrinks to Half of U.S. Homes (Financial Times, Dec 9, 2015)


University of Maryland, Society's Level of Mobility Influences How Members Treat Outsiders (University of Maryland, Dec 10, 2015)


Ben Casselman and Andrew Flowers, Rich Kids Stay Rich, Poor Kids Stay Poor (FiveThirtyEight, Feb 1, 2016)


Stacey Tisdale, The Black Elite: A Look Inside Black America’s Widening Wealth Gap (Black Enterprise, Mar 8, 2016)


Katie Johnston, Half of City's Residents Make Less Than $35,000 a Year, Study Says (Boston Globe, Mar 15, 2016)


Katha Pollitt, Evicted by Matthew Desmond Review – What If the Problem of Poverty Is That It's Profitable to Other People? (The Guardian, Apr 7, 2016)


Michael A. McCarthy, Don’t the Rich Deserve to Keep Their Money? (Jacobin Magazine, Apr 18, 2016)


Thomas B. Edsall, How the Other Fifth Lives (NY Times, Apr 27, 2016) about the self-segregation of the wealthy


Molly Redden and Jana Kasperkevic, Wage Gap Between White and Black Americans Is Worse Today Than in 1979 (Guardian, Sep 20, 2016)


Derek Thompson, Obama's War on Inequality (The Atlantic, Sep 26, 2016)


David Leonhardt, The American Dream, Quantified at Last (NY Times, Dec 8, 2016) and Bill Chappell, U.S. Kids Far Less Likely To Out-Earn Their Parents, As Inequality Grows (NPR, Dec 9, 2016) about intergenerational mobility


Trymaine Lee, Geography of Poverty: A Journey Through Forgotten America (MSNBC News, Dec 2016)


The Economist, Place-Based Economic Policies as a Response to Populism (The Economist, Dec 15, 2016) with helpful comparison US vs. EU; noting history of land-grant universities


James Watkins, The Man Behind the Most Important Chart of 2016 (The Daily Dose, Dec 19, 2016)


Neil Gilbert, Prosperity, Not Upward Mobility, Is What Matters (The Atlantic, Jan 5, 2017)


Larry Elliot, World's Eight Richest People Have Same Wealth as Poorest 50% (Guardian, Jan 15, 2017)


Dunja Djudjic, Dramatic Drone Photos Show a Difference Between the Rich and the Poor (DIY Photography, Feb 1, 2017)


Peter Coy, The Big Reason Whites Are Richer Than Blacks in America (Bloomberg, Feb 8, 2017)


Adrian Florido, Black, Latino Two-Parent Families Have Half The Wealth Of White Single Parents (NPR, Feb 8, 2017)


Janelle Jones, The Racial Wealth Gap: How African-Americans Have Been Shortchanged Out of the Materials to Build Wealth (Economic Policy Institute, Feb 13, 2017)


Walter Scheidel, The Only Thing, Historically, That's Curbed Inequality: Catastrophe (The Atlantic, Feb 21, 2017)


Zack Beauchamp, No Easy Answers: Why Left-Wing Economics Is Not the Answer to Right-Wing Populism (Vox, Mar 13, 2017) but critiqued by Marshall Steinbaum, No Easy Answers, Just Bad History (Jacobin Magazine, Mar 17, 2017)


Chris Ladd, Unspeakable Realities Block Universal Health Coverage In The US (Forbes, Mar 13, 2017) on "white socialism"


Abby McCloskley, The American Dream Hinges on Family (National Review, Apr 13, 2017)


Lynn Parramore, America is Regressing into a Developing Nation for Most People (Institute for New Economic Thinking, Apr 20, 2017)


Marshall Steinbaum, Why Are Economists Giving Piketty the Cold Shoulder? (Boston Review, May 12, 2017)


Thom Hartmann, Richard Wolff: A Labor Manifesto for the Global Left (The Big Picture RT, May 16, 2017)


Economic Policy Institute, The Agenda to Raise America’s Pay (Economic Policy Institute, May 2017)


Dylan Matthews, You're Not Imagining It: The Rich Really Are Hoarding Economic Growth (Vox, Aug 8, 2017) very helpful charts about income growth


Amy Goodman, Yanis Varoufakis on Global Capitalism & How Trump’s Tax Plan is Class War Against the Poor (NPR, Nov 3, 2017)


Tanza Loudenback, According to One Estimate, Wealthy Couples in NYC Need $190 Million to Keep Their Heads Above Water (Business Insider, Nov 17, 2017)


Katharine Schwab, The Airbnb For Affordable Housing Is Here (Co.Design, Nov 21, 2017) 


Ryan D. Enos, How Segregation Leads to Racist Voting by Whites (Vox, Nov 28, 2017)


Sunbeam Television, Study: Massachusetts Single Parents Spend More Than 70 Percent of Income on Child Care (News 7 Boston, Dec 27, 2017)