Journal of Economic Literature: Vol. 52 No. 2 - Book Review

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Book(s) Reviewed

The Other Welfare: Supplemental Security Income and U.S. Social Policy by Edward D. Berkowitz and Larry DeWitt

Published By: Ithaca and London: Cornell University Press
ISBN: 978-0-8014-5173-7
Date of Publication: 2013


Book Review Detail

Reviewed by: Mary C. Daly of Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco
Review DOI: 10.1257/jel.52.2.535.r4
Review Pages: 541-43

Book Review Abstract

Mary C. Daly of the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco reviews "The Other Welfare: Supplemental Security Income and U.S. Social Policy", by Edward D. Berkowitz and Larry DeWitt. The Econlit abstract of this book begins: "Presents a historical chronicle of the development of the Supplemental Security Income program from its creation in 1972 into the twenty-first century. Discusses creating a new welfare program—the politics of welfare and social security reform in the Nixon Administration; a year in transition—why planning for the new program became difficult; launching the program—why the program began badly; the emergence of a disability program—how the program's fundamental identity changed; the continuing disability reviews—how the politics of controversy hindered the program; the courts and other sources of program growth—how the program expanded in a conservative age; the welfare reform of 1996—how the program became swept up in the narrative of welfare fraud and abuse; and post-1996 developments—a brief postscript. Berkowitz is Professor of History and Public Policy and Public Administration at George Washington University. DeWitt is former Public Historian with the U.S. Social Security Administration."


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Book Review Authors

Mary C. Daly of Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco


JEL Classifications

H55: Social Security and Public Pensions
I38: Welfare and Poverty: Government Programs; Provision and Effects of Welfare Programs


Journal of Economic Literature


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