519.9 Homelessness: Incarceration, escape or freedom?

Friday, August 3, 2012: 12:05 PM
Faculty of Economics, TBA
André HOVNANIAN , Faculdade de Medicina da Universidade de São Paulo, Brazil
Marco HOVNANIAN , Universidade Presbiteriana Mackenzie, Brazil
Homelessness is a serious and complex worldwide situation that admits to be defined as a condition of people without a regular dwelling. It encompasses a highly heterogeneous and susceptible group of people whose origins are closely associated to the uncontrolled spread of modern cities and to the regulatory and adaptive mechanisms developed by society in order to maintain its own stability. Several studies have addressed the risk factors associated to homelessness; incarceration is on the top list. The concept of incarceration is intimately linked to crime. It is not known whether crime is directly associated to homelessness or if homelessness itself is a kind of social incarceration; or even if homelessness could be interpreted as a condition of social escape. On the contrary, could it represent a state of freedom? The present article questions assumptions concerning society and its relation to this intriguing phenomenon.