Main Body

Chapter 10: Conclusion

What sets Northwest Reading apart today is the Latino community, which continues to grow at a rapid rate. Many of our interview subjects have noted that the Latino community has changed attitudes and influenced opinions in the neighborhood. John Slifko, for example, says that the importance and structure of family within the area was directly inspired by the inclusion of Hispanic and Latino culture. (J. Slifko, personal communication, March 18, 2017). In addition, they also note that the culture in Northwest Reading will continue to change as the community grows, even as residents come and go (A. Garcia, personal communication, March 13, 2017; J. Brigel, personal communication, February 24, 2017).

What we ourselves have observed is that in Northwest Reading, while individuals share many cultural and personal similarities, they can differ greatly in terms of perception. Some view the neighborhood overall as a tightly knit community, while others believe that residents generally think more individualistically.

However, one theme we found repeated through our interviews was that this section of Reading, as well as in part Reading as a whole, was misunderstood by many people outside of it, and many felt that the city garnered a reputation that was largely unwarranted (A. Garcia, personal communication, March 13, 2017). Many individuals are hopeful in the idea that the city’s best days are not behind them (D. Reed, personal communication, February 22, 2017).

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A Portrait of Life in Northwest Reading by Penn State Berks is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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