Dr. Frances Fox Piven: Honoring a Classic

Regulating the Poor: the Functions of Public Welfare was first published in 1971. Forty years later it is still regarded as a classic, as is its co-author, Frances Fox Piven. Widely recognized as one of America’s most thoughtful and provocative commentators on America’s social welfare system, Dr. Piven’s work has been the driving force behind much of contemporary social welfare policy, including the National Voter Registration Act of 1993. Also known as the Motor Voter Act, the legislation requires all social services agencies and Departments of Motor Vehicles to offer voter registration forms to the public.

Frances Fox Piven
Photo courtesy of Democracynow.org

The University of Connecticut School of Social Work was honored when Dr. Piven, Distinguished Professor of Sociology and Political Science at the CUNY Graduate Center, accepted the invitation to be the featured speaker at the School’s 60th anniversary celebration in 2009.

On the occasion of the 40th anniversary of the publication of Regulating the Poor: the Functions of Public Welfare, the University of Connecticut School of Social Work joins the New York State Senate, schools of social work and social welfare organizations across the nation in honoring Dr. Piven for her distinguished contributions to social welfare policy. She is a truly a classic.