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Sudip Mazumdar wrote an interesting article in Newsweek regarding the movie Slumdog Millionaire; of course it was about slums in India but I think it provides insight into long-term poverty anywhere:

"Slum life is a cage. It robs you of confidence in the face of the rich and the advantaged. It steals your pride, deadens your ambition, limits your imagination and psychologically cripples you whenever you step outside the comfort zone of your own neighborhood."

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