Vanderbilt Law Review

First Page



Despite the general prosperity of this country, a cursory survey of any American town or city will reveal that many Americans live in housing which is "substandard." Frequently one sees unpainted houses characterized by broken windows and inadequate sanitary facilities. In urban areas, the ever present tenement is often filled with too many people and not enough toilets; stairs are dangerous and refuse lies uncollected in the halls. Rooms without windows are common, while those blessed with windows frequently receive little light--the only view is another window of another building. Disease and discomfort are everywhere.These conditions, however, are neither new nor unnoticed.Throughout American history, individuals as well as various levels of government have attempted to remedy, or at least alleviate, the housing problem. This study will explore one such effort--the federally-financed, locally-administered public housing program created by the Housing Act of 1937. Consequently, throughout this study, the term "public housing," describing any period after 1937,refers only to the product of this Act, unless otherwise indicated. This study does not concern federally-funded housing programs such as Federal Housing Authority mortgage guarantees, rehabilitation of existing dwellings, and self-help programs.

Included in

Housing Law Commons