Gilbert’s Guide to the Economic Gap – Hobart and William Smith Colleges \
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Gilbert’s Guide to the Economic Gap

Navigating intricate socioeconomic issues is never easy. Especially when it’s an issue as complex and close-to-home as polarization in the United States. Fortunately, Hobart and William Smith have an expert scholar who has been hard at work, uncovering the core issues related to this problem. In the recently published “Rich and Poor in America: A Reference Handbook,” Professor of Economics Geoffrey Gilbert delves into the issues involved in the growing socioeconomic gap between the upper and lower classes in the United States. “The subject of U.S. poverty has been of interest to me for a long time, and this handbook gave me a chance to look at it in a different way, namely, as part of the issue of economic inequality,” explains Gilbert. “The gap between those at the top and those at the bottom of the economic ladder in America has been growing much wider.” “Rich and Poor in America,” his third book for ABC-CLIO, is not just for economists and economics majors, however. “I wanted to write a book that would ease readers with limited technical expertise into the various aspects of the rich-poor divide,” Gilbert says. The professor himself was introduced to economics through reading, and his interest was immediately piqued. “I read a book in high school called “Ideas of the Great Economists” by George Soule,” Gilbert explains. “It wasn’t part of any course; I just happened to pick it up. When I got to college, I knew from the start that I would major in economics.” He now teaches a number of economics classes at HWS, including “Poverty and Welfare” (Economics 248) and a senior seminar on population issues (Economics 466). “There is a fairly substantial overlap between Economics 248 and the new book, particularly in terms of how one defines and measures poverty and the kinds of policies that might lift low-income families out of poverty,” he says. Gilbert, who joined the faculty in 1977, holds a bachelor’s degree from Dartmouth College and a doctorate from Johns Hopkins University. He is also the author of “World Poverty: A Reference Handbook” and “World Population: A Reference Handbook,” and editor of “Essay on the Principle of Population” and “Malthus: Critical Responses.”