Life in a Philadelphia Housing Project

Monday, April 20, 2009

Humorist Joe Queenan gets serious in his memoir Closing Time, it's about his upbringing with an alcoholic father in a Philadelphia housing project in the 1960’s.

Event: Joe Queenan is speaking and signing books
Monday, April 20, at 7 pm
McNally Jackson Bookstore
52 Prince Street
More information here.


Joe Queenan

Comments [6]


Wow. Great interview, deep, rich, churning up all sorts of seldom-seen treasures and horrors.

Especially for those of us old enough to have some insight into what it meant to live as a poor man in that era. What hard lives they (and their families) lived.

Apr. 20 2009 01:32 PM

Were the Irish writers who wrote about poverty, the same as modern day rappers.

Apr. 20 2009 01:24 PM
Catherine from NY

From your description he and my father were cut from the same cloth... my father never worked in the time I knew him. He had a miltitude of reasons for it, but would spend day after day reading anything and everything while getting drunk on the coach.

Ultimately, his death came as a relief. I could stop waiting for "the call".

Apr. 20 2009 01:23 PM

Nice generalization about Irish. Does that also include being a racist towards newer minorities?

Apr. 20 2009 01:22 PM
Jack from Brooklyn

Excellent interview and profile. I didn’t grow up in the projects—NYC tenement for me—but I can relate to his background and some of his experiences.

Apr. 20 2009 01:22 PM

As someone who has grown up poor? Which ideas work better for the poor? The Great Society ideas of liberalism, or any of the ideas of conservatism.

Does he have any thoughts on microfinance?

What would be the ideal way to deal with poverty.

Apr. 20 2009 01:07 PM

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