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book, 160 pages, 28 x 21.6 cm, Soft Skull Press, New York 1999

Seth Tobocman: You dont have to fuck people over, 1999, book

Experience the ‘war at home’ up close and personal from the front lines throughout a decade of struggle against police brutality and gentrification on Manhattan’s Lower East Side as told through dynamic black and white imagery. Tobocman squatted on Manhattan’s Lower East Side and participated in and recorded grassroots efforts to take over abandoned tenements in the late ‘80s and early ‘90s. Along with a ragtag neighborhood collection of working-class blacks, Puerto Ricans and whites, as well as artists and homeless people from all backgrounds, Tobocman broke into abandoned, crumbing tenements in hopes of securing affordable housing. As the neighborhood gentrified in the late 1980s, the squats became the center of a housing movement that eventually collapsed under the weight of its diverse membership and from the unrelenting opposition of real estate developers, the police and the city government.