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John A Wilson Building

1350 Pennsylvania Ave NW

G9

Washington, DC 20004

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For long-time residents of Washington, DC’s Shaw/U Street, the neighborhood has become almost unrecognizable in recent years. Where the city’s most infamous open-air drug market once stood, a farmers’ market now sells grass-fed beef and homemade duck egg ravioli. On the corner where AM.PM carryout used to dish out soul food, a new establishment markets its $28 foie gras burger. Shaw is experiencing a dramatic transformation, from “ghetto” to “gilded ghetto,” where white newcomers are rehabbing homes, developing dog parks, and paving the way for a third wave coffee shop on nearly every block. American University Associate Professor, Derek Hyra discusses his new book - Race, Class, and Politics in the Cappuccino City - an in-depth ethnography of this gilded ghetto.


Derek Hyra is an associate professor in the School of Public Affairs at American University. His research focuses on processes of neighborhood change, with an emphasis on housing, urban politics, and race. Dr. Hyra is the co-editor of Capital Dilemma: Growth and Inequality in Washington, DC (Routledge 2016) and author of The New Urban Renewal: The Economic Transformation of Harlem and Bronzeville (University of Chicago Press 2008). He recently completed his third book, Race, Class, and Politics in the Cappuccino City (University of Chicago Press 2017), an ethnographic investigation of the redevelopment of Washington, DC’s Shaw/U Street neighborhood. Dr. Hyra’s research has been showcased in both academic journals, such as Housing Policy Debate, Journal of Urban Affairs, Urban Affairs Review, and Urban Studies, and popular media outlets, including the British Broadcasting Corporation, Chicago Public Radio, C-SPAN, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, and The New York Times. He has also received several important grants from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, the Rockefeller Foundation, and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundaton.

Dr. Hyra strongly believes in public service. He has served as board chair of the Alexandria Redevelopment and Housing Authority, as an Alexandria Planning Commissioner, and as an Obama appointee on the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Council on Underserved Communities. He was also a U.S. Congressional candidate in Northern Virginia in 2014. He received his B.A. from Colgate University and his Ph.D. from the University of Chicago.


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John A Wilson Building

1350 Pennsylvania Ave NW

G9

Washington, DC 20004

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