VULNERABILITY, RESILIENCE, AND THE FAIR HOUSING ACT

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

Abstract

The 1968 Fair Housing Act (FHA) is the most important antidiscrimination housing legislation today. It prohibits discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status, and national origin in housing provision, transactions, financing, and related services. Building on vulnerability theory, this chapter first argues that the FHA as a law in action is incapable of addressing systemic housing inequity in America and then proposes a reinterpretation of the FHA to enhance its egalitarian capability. Specifically, the FHA as applied by the courts shows excessive deference to defense, creates an illegal immorality versus legal privilege dichotomy, and consequently harbors an anti-redistribution bias and motivates anti-antidiscrimination resistance. A reinterpreted FHA will benefit from a social-situational view toward harm and discrimination and a reconceptualized resilience state for systemic action. Although the chapter focuses on the FHA, much of the analysis also applies to antidiscrimination law more broadly.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationLaw, Vulnerability, and the Responsive State
Subtitle of host publicationBeyond Equality and Liberty
PublisherTaylor and Francis
Pages158-174
Number of pages17
ISBN (Electronic)9781000968064
ISBN (Print)9781032346656
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2023

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences(all)

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