The genesis of Borrowing While Black builds upon the simple observation that racial housing discrimination has been a crucial line of division in American society since the Civil War, and although no longer sanctioned by law, the role of race in housing outcomes remains a persistent as well as prominent aspect of contemporary urban policy. Born from legally sanctioned racism, nurtured and promulgated by de jure segregation housing policies, justified by academic scholars, and reinforced by institutional racism the history of Borrowing While Black is a useful template for understanding contemporary housing issues. Such as, how large quantities of “toxic” subprime mortgage products infiltrated African American neighborhoods and urban housing markets without regulatory intercession or governmental oversight.

Throughout this research, we provide an understanding of the chronological nature of issues, debates and public policy approaches to end housing discrimination against African American individuals and neighborhoods and explained why the Borrowing While Black “race effect” in housing continues to hold a unique place in American history. We define racism in the field of housing as the legal subjugation and restriction of property rights. We define racial housing discrimination as the process by which racism was legally sanctioned by de jure segregation. Finally, we define institutional racism as the process through which official public policy, carried out by the real-estate professions with energetic support from the academic community, purposefully carried out discriminatory housing policies against African Americans.

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