Affordable Housing in Rural America : Understanding the Crisis
Campbell, Kalyn Marie
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The importance of access to affordable, quality housing is evidenced through the role that housing plays in an individual's life. On a theoretical level, housing functions as a means through which an individual may find self-actualization, interact with society, and access other forms of capital. Furthermore, on a tangible level, housing provides the physical shelter and security necessary for a person's wellbeing. However, despite the importance of housing within the United States, the lack of affordable housing has become a serious issue across the country. Particularly in rural communities, access to affordable, quality housing has become increasingly more difficult as rural America has quickly become the area most greatly affected by the housing crisis. Despite the seriousness of this issue, scholarship on the topic has not reflected the growing need for support and attention to the housing crisis in these communities. This paper seeks to understand the most pressing issues facing the housing crisis in rural America in order to better understand the nature of the housing crisis in these communities. Beginning with a theoretical analysis of space, property, homeownership, and the housing crisis, this paper concludes with a textual analysis of the rural housing crisis coupled with an analysis of the topic through a summer-long service trip dedicated to the affordable housing cause. It is the goal of this paper to illuminate how rural communities have been most greatly affected by the housing crisis in order to provide recommendations about how to best address the issue.