The Geography of Opportunity: Race and Housing Choice in Metropolitan America. Edited by Xavier de Souza Briggs. Washington, DC: The Brookings Institution, 2005. 353p. $29.95.
The Social Medicine Reader: Health Policy, Markets, and Medicine. 2d ed. Edited by Jonathan Oberlander, Larry R. Churchill, Susan E. Estroff, Gail E. Henderson, Nancy M. P. King, and Ronald P. Strauss. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2005. 288p. $22.95.
These two books, each in its own way, provide much-needed resources for thinking about how public policies should change to address the latest developments associated with the enduring problem of unequal access to basic resources in U.S. society, including housing and health care. In recent years, unequal access to affordable and decent housing and uneven access to affordable and decent health care both have taken on new features posing new challenges for participants in the public policymaking process. The Geography of Opportunity, edited by Xavier de Souza Briggs, brings together a set of richly detailed essays that look at the housing disparity problem from the increasingly popular perspective of regionalism; and The Social Medicine Reader, edited by Jonathan Oberlander and colleagues, offers an equally informative group of essays that range more widely to address a variety of issues concerning the changed landscape of health care in the United States today. Both books are likely to prove to be critical resources for energizing renewed efforts to make policy less exclusionary in each area.