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This is categorized as a crime. Can someone expand the article about that? CoolGuy 14:09, 24 July 2006 (UTC)

Basically blockbusting relates to crime in that it exploited people's fear of crime, and probably as it drove middle-class people of all races out of communities, it caused crime to rise. I'll update the article the next time I'm at the library, the reference I want to cite is in a journal I don't have access to from here. Anyway, I'm not sure if the connection is strong enough to list it in the crime category, but it's definently something that should be expanded in the article. --W.marsh 14:27, 24 July 2006 (UTC)
Calling it racist is a value judgment, not an objective fact. If black neighborhoods have a much higher crime rate, wouldn't it be rational to want to leave a neighborhood if it starts becoming black? This article needs to be reworded to take the political opinions and political propaganda terms out of it. Bostoner (talk) 19:00, 9 January 2011 (UTC)
I think this has more to do with humor than crime. I didn't know of the phenomenon before reading this article, and I find it absolutely hilarious. One man's temporary solution is another's source of profit.. But if there are real solutions to the problem, they would be interesting to link to. Coffee2theorems 23:15, 28 August 2006 (UTC)
I also think this is hilarious, but at the same time sad that real estate brokers would resort to such race-based practices to force the sale of homes. At least they didn't move in on the UES... (talk) 21:13, 12 January 2008 (UTC)

It is also, now, an illegal practice, i.e., a crime. I don't see how it is in any way funny. Real estate speculators systematically exploiting racist fears and middle-class black aspirations to make millions by creating an ever more segregated society. Combined with massive municipal disinvestment from the inner cities (public transportation, schools, services etc.), and racist banks' redlining, blockbusting in the mid-20th century is one of the primary causes of urban African-American poverty today (because of lack of accumulated capital through homeowner equity over multiple generations). This article is incoherent because the two definitions, presented as contraries, are actually the same racist practice. ichnography

General term - having multiple neighbouring properties under the control of one individual, group or company[edit]

Is this true that blockbusting may be used generally to describe a practice where an individual, group of allied individuals or a company buy up neighbouring smaller properties to gain a larger area of land under their control? It could be a way of allowing a landlord to have rental control over a street, block or neighbourhood or a developer to have a large land area to "work with" for example. SimonMackay (talk) 13:39, 4 April 2008 (UTC)

Usage of term "racist"[edit]

The article uses the term "racist" in five places, but "racist" is a highly charged, matter-of-opinion term not really definable. I would say "discriminatory" is a more objective, appropriate term for an encyclopedia article. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 04:47, 21 October 2012 (UTC)


I would like to add the following citations to this entry, but I am new to Wikipedia and do not know how to start a reference list. Could someone add them for me? I do not plan on being a regular contributor but wanted to add this information.

Orser, W. Edward. (1994) Blockbusting in Baltimore: The Edmondson Village Story (Lexington: The University Press of Kentucky) Seligman, Amanda I. (2005) Block by Block: Neighborhoods and Public Policy on Chicago's West Side (Chicago: University of Chicago Press).

Thank you

Braeburn 19:05, 23 March 2007 (UTC) Braeburn

  • I have added them as "further reading", which is what we usually do until a reference has directly been used in expanding an article. --W.marsh 19:13, 23 March 2007 (UTC)

Again, thank you! 19:29, 23 March 2007 (UTC)Braeburn


The term racist is peppered throughout this article where it is used to describe certain business methods that prey upon racial animosity to obtain a profit as well as racial restrictive covenants. These methods and laws are not racist, cannot be racist, and should not be described as racist as procedures and processes do not have volition or the mental power necessary to form racist intent.

Racism is the belief that certain races are inherently superior to others. People are Racist or they are not Racist. Methods and Laws are either Discriminatory or not Discriminatory. Someone should clean this up because it reads like it was written by someone with the grasp a 10-year-olds grasp of the English language has written it. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 2605:6000:F804:1601:6C12:CE4D:DBC8:22A5 (talk) 03:12, 21 March 2014 (UTC)

Style of writing[edit]

In general, I think this article is a bit hard to read in places. Several sentences are just too long, and their readability suffering from multiple clauses in one sentence. An extra period and starting a new sentence here and there, wouldn't hurt. Especially since this is in places a complicated subject for a layman to understand how the practice actually worked. But of course, any encyclopedia article should have a focus on readability since one of it's primary goals is to explain things. I will make an attempt to make the text more easily readable with a few minimal changes -- see edit history. Greetings, RagingR2 (talk) 09:30, 24 May 2016 (UTC)


Unless it is from a revision of the play (I’m working on that angle), both blockbusting and “block busting”, the expression, seem to date back at least to 1940, as it is a plot point in the 1940 American Negro Theater play, On Strivers Row, by Abram Hill.

John W. Kennedy (talk) 00:07, 17 June 2017 (UTC)