The state of being poor; lack of the means of providing material needs or comforts. 2. Deficiency in amount; scantiness: "the poverty of feeling that reduced her soul" (Scott Turow). 3. Unproductiveness; infertility: the poverty of the soil. 4. Renunciation made by a member of a religious order of the right to own property.
What is poverty? Poverty is defined by Encarta online dictionary as, "the state of not having enough money to take care of basic needs such as food, clothing, and shelter"(Encarta-"poverty"). In my own terms I define poverty as simply the state of having little to no money, and few or no material possessions. Within both of these definitions, poverty can be described in many different ways. Some attempt to reduce it to numbers, while others argue that a more ambiguous definition must be used. Today, most economists and social workers use two ways in defining poverty, "absolute poverty" and "relative poverty". In the end, I believe it is a combination of both that best defines poverty. When trying to define poverty there are many issues and causes of how so many people in today's society are in poverty. One way poverty is described is as "absolute poverty". "Absolute poverty" is defined by Encarta online dictionary, as the measure of the number of people living below a certain income threshold or the number of households unable to afford certain basic goods and services (Encarta "absolute poverty"). In other words, in the United States, absolute poverty is used with an official poverty line set in dollars and representing the annual income required to allow a family of a given size to purchase the range of goods and services that are seen as constituting the minimum acceptable way of life in America. (U.S. H.H.S.) In every country the poverty line is set to measure poverty in accordance to the expectations of what it costs to meet the basic human needs. For example, as Angelcare reports,...
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