Jeff Nixa's A Good Neighborhood

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Jeff Nixa highlights the fundamental elements of neighborhood in the article. The message Nixa wants to convey to the reader is that a neighborhood is not about structures but rather the people who live there. This is the essay's premise. (Gediman, Gregory & Gediman, 2011). In Nixa's opinion, since people are the fundamental building block of any society, excellent neighborhoods are created and developed by the people who live there. Through the narrative of his essay, the author has provided evidence for this theory. He gives the reader a description of a "bad" neighborhood in the introduction based on the first-hand reports of some locals. However, he came to realize this is based on racism, thus went ahead to buy a house in Cottage Grove.

Besides, Nixa also tries to show how people are divided along racism. According to him, he is surprised that the Whites fail to understand good things about the Blacks and simply paint them as "low-income people of color" (Gediman et al., 2011). The phrase, "blindness and coded racism of privilege", refers to how the Whites are blinded to see the friendliness of the Blacks. The use of the term "privilege" means that most of the issues that contribute to racism are made-up and aimed at benefiting the Whites.

Reponse One

Firstly, it is correct to argue that Jeff Nixa is as well trying to show that people should not be quick to judge others, or a place. I concur with the observation that personal experience is necessary in some cases since it provides one with firsthand information. Although I agree with you on the general meaning of the phrase, perhaps you needed to be more specific by replacing the word "world" by the "Whites".

Response Two

In the essay, it is correct that Jeff Nixa has emphasized the need to avoid judging others based on other people's accounts. I agree with you that Nixa sees racism as a way of justifying that the neighborhood is 'bad". In your explanation of the phrase, I think Nixa meant that the accusers are really racists, but not pretending to be racists.


Gediman, D., Gregory, J., & Gediman, M. J. (2011). This I believe: Life lessons. Hoboken, N.J:


June 19, 2023

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