The Latest & Greatest from the DBC!

April 2018 Related Resources: Class and Poverty

Wanting to dig deeper into one of our selections? We research related resources -- articles, videos, and more -- to help you expand your knowledge beyond the pages of our selections.

Wanting to dig deeper into one of our selections? We research related resources -- articles, videos, and more -- to help you expand your knowledge beyond the pages of our selections.


Check out the book trailer for Crenshaw.

Wondering what the quote at the beginning of the book is from? It’s from a 1944 Pulitzer Prize-winning comedic play by Mary Chase called Harvey. It’s about a man whose best friend is a 6-foot-tall rabbit! It was recently brought back to the stage with Jim Parsons (of “The Big Bang Theory”) playing Elwood P. Dowd, the man who sees Harvey. Playbill has a great video with some highlights from the show. 

Crenshaw isn’t the only cat who loves to surf. Kuli, the one-eyed beach cat, loves catching waves with his surfing owner. You can follow Kuli on Instagram Instagram and keep up with his latest adventures. California-born animal trainer Robert Dolwell, who lives in Australia, is teaching his two fearless felines how to skateboard, skimboard and even surf. 

Umbrellas have plenty of nicknames, including the nickname Crenshaw uses, bumbershoot! 

Kids develop imaginary friends for a variety of reasons. Psychology Today explores reasons why and how parents can respond. A recent study has found that childhood imaginary friends are now linked to heightened creativity! 

What’s in a name? Jackson doesn’t know how he came up with the name Crenshaw, but he does know it sounds like a good name for a cat. Here’s an interesting list of some famousCrenshaws throughout history. Crenshaw, normally referred to as the Crenshaw District, is a neighborhood in South Los AngelesSouth Los Angeles. The name derives from Crenshaw Boulevard, one of the city's major thoroughfares. Crenshaw, Mississippionly has about 1000 residents! 

Jackson was named after Jackson Guitars. Check out these sleek instruments on the Jackson Guitars website! You can also check out Robin Guitars, Robin’s namesake, which has stopped producing new products after 28 years of service. 

Jackson and Robin have to choose special possessions to put in their “keepsake bags” before the family has a yard sale. Jackson chooses A Hole is to Dig by Ruth Krauss and Robin is obsessed with The House on East 88th Street by Bernard Waber. Have you read the either of these books series? 

Cats mark their territory in a variety of ways. “When a cat rubs or pushes its head against you, also known as head butting or bunting, the cat is also marking you with his scent in a show of affiliation,” this article explains. 

Jackson’s dad’s favorite artist is BB King. You can listen to this playlist of his greatest hits while you read along! 

Flavorwire has a list of the greatest imaginary friends on film and tv including from cult favorite Donnie Darko and Fight Club. If you’d like to consume more media that feature imaginary friends, check out this list.

Last year Jenna Elfman starred in a show about a woman who has an imaginary friend. Check out Imaginary Mary!

Business Insider interviewed a New Yorker who lives in his car about what the experience is like. This man chose to live in his car, while Jackson’s family did not. The experience is still interesting to read about, no matter what the cause. 

Schools and libraries across the country host Crenshaw Food Drives to fight childhood hunger. See a few examples of their charity in action! 

Family Promise is a housing relief organization that aims to keep families together. Jackson's dad doesn't want to go to a shelter because he would be separated from the rest of the family, and this is typical shelter practice. Family Promise partners with faith communities to provide housing, and there's also a central community center where the parents can look for jobs, get training, etc. Meanwhile, the kids still have an "address" in their home county, and they can be bused to their same school, no need to transfer. Learn how you can volunteer with this great organization on their website. 

Reducing the social costs of poverty, strengthening the workforce, and building a more prosperous and sustainable community are goals on which most communities agree. aha! Process’s Bridges Out of Poverty community support program provides a family of concepts, workshops, and products to help employers, community organizations, social service agencies, and individuals address and reduce poverty in a comprehensive way. This framework about poverty is based on the idea that poverty is scarcity of resources, not just money. 

Bridges Out of Poverty workshops are two-fold. First, workshops for people in the community to learn about the framework and the multi-faceted nature of poverty (because there’s not one way to fix poverty). Second, workshops for people experiencing poverty: these are called Getting Ahead. You can see a whole list of workshops here.

Feeding America is another organization you can get involved with. For more than 35 years, Feeding America has responded to the hunger crisis in America by providing food to people in need through a nationwide network of food banks. 

Jackson mentions that Texas has the world’s largest urban bat population. Locals and tourists go to Austin to watch their migration. Learn more about why bats are so important for the environment. Every summer night, hundreds of people gather to see the world's largest urban bat colony emerge from under the Congress Avenue Bridge in Austin. If you travel a bit, you can stand within the world's largest bat colony at Bracken Cave


Jesmyn Ward explains why she chose to write about rural Mississippi in Salvage the Bones. 

”Jesmyn Ward's novel adopts a teen's perspective, showing how one black Mississippi family endured poverty, sexual abuse and violence, and then braved Hurricane Katrina.” Ward speaks with NPR host Michel Martin on the background and inspiration for the novel. 

Salvage the Bones won the 2011 National Book Award! Check out Ward’s acceptance speech

Our story begins in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. Ward uses the hurricane as a backdrop for her story and explains in this interview with PBS why she chose to use it at a setting. 

FEMA has a comprehensive list of the ways one should prepare for a hurricane. 

Ward says that Faulkner’s As I Lay Dying and Edith Hamilton’s Mythology were inspiration for the story, and even references them throughout the narrative. She specifically mentions the story of Jason and the Argonauts. Esch also mentions the Medea myth (which ties in to Jason’s story as well). 

One of China’s puppies is thought to have parvo, a highly contagious viral illness that affects dogs. Learn more about this illness and its symptoms. 

Breaking news! Jesmyn Ward will be honored in her home state on the Mississippi Writers Trail. 

Dogfighting is one of the central plot lines during days 7 and 8. The Humane Society has an excellent fact sheet that explains how this inhumane started and the consequences of participating in it. 

The ASPCA also gives a breakdown of the history of dogfighting in America, the different levels of involvement, and the types of dogs that are traditionally used. 

The New Yorker published an interesting take in 2009 by author Malcolm Gladwell on the differences (or similarities) between football and dogfighting. The article is lengthy, but worth the read. 

High school teacher Brendan Kiely explains why he thinks it is important to teach Salvage the Bones in his classroom.

Esch makes fried bologna for her family to eat. Here’s a fun recipe you can try to taste it for yourself on a sandwich! 

The History Channel takes a look at the destruction Hurricane Katrina caused. 

Anderson Cooper went back to examine what life is like after Hurricane Katrina ten years later and how it is still affecting lives today. 

We often look at the destruction that comes along with hurricanes and tropical storms – and for good reason – but there are some benefits that come along with these storms as well.