What is The Cloward and Piven Strategy?

I was asked this recently and thought a quick post would be helpful for future conversations.


“Widespread campaigns to register the eligible poor for welfare aid, and to help existing recipients obtain their full benefits, would produce bureaucratic disruption in welfare agencies and fiscal disruption in local and state governments. These disruptions would generate severe political strains, and deepen existing divisions among elements in the big-city Democratic coalition: the remaining white middle class, the white working-class ethnic groups and the growing minority poor.” … “In order to generate a crisis, the poor must obtain benefits, which they have forfeited. Until now, they have been inhibited from asserting claims by self-protective devices within the welfare system: its capacity to limit information, to intimidate applicants, to demoralize recipients, and arbitrarily to deny lawful claims.”

“The Weight of the Poor: A Strategy to End Poverty.”

The “Strategy” outlined By Richard Cloward and Frances Fox Piven is a road map used to foment a communist revolution. It should be noted that as a precursor to the strategy being effective a society must already be in the socialist stage: IE there must be a social welfare system to overwhelm.