David F. Wiley
Summary and Response
Jonathon Kozol, the writer of Illiterate America in 1985, takes time to study Illiteracy and poverty in America and he wrote a Novel in 1988 called “The Homeless and Their Children” where He told a story of a woman and her four children called Joanne (Kozol, 1985). Jonathan spent a lot of time to get to know Rachel and her children who lived in a homeless hotel in New York called the Martinique, which was located at Sixth Avenue and Thirty Second Street. This hotel was known to be the largest hotel for the homeless people in New York. Jonathan Kozol was enlightening the facts that there were so many homeless and illiterate people in America, giving the facts that at least one third of American citizens were affected. With Joanne’s illiteracy she couldn’t read her mail, didn’t know if it was important or if it was about her children and this made her very scared not knowing if she did the right thing for her children. Martinique Hotel is home to over 400 hundred families and 1200 children. The hotel itself is in a very dilapidated condition, and it’s like living in the slum. The conditions in the hotel were horrible, from walls that are were crumbling covered in lead based paint, to plumbing issues in the bathroom that has made raw sewage stand in pools on the floor, This was a terrible problem for Joanne and her children. They had 4 beds set up in one room that were on unprotected bed frames, which made a very unsafe for the children to sleep on. Joanne had a radiator that is was spewing hot steam which was located at eye level to some of the children. The crib for her youngest child who is only just months old was falling apart; this made Joanne worried for his safety. There were green mold looking smudges all over the walls from leaking plumbing from the rooms above hers. The lighting in the apartment is bright fluorescent lights that made it very hard on their eyes. The television set...
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