Date of Award



Edward Cahill

Second Advisor

Amy Aronson


In recent years, gentrification has had the ability to radically change the landscape of Spanish Harlem due to an increase in both public and private sector attempts to revitalize the aging and long ignored area. It is the purpose of this paper to evaluate the positive and negative effects of gentrification as they apply to El Barrio. To do this several key questions must be asked. Who are the gentrifiers? Who are the winners and the losers? What promises were made to East Harlem residents? Were these promises fulfilled? What do the ‘native’ residents fear most? What do residents enjoy about gentrification? The research methods employed in order to answer these questions began with general scholarly material regarding gentrification. Then interviews of Spanish Harlem residents were conducted in addition to the evaluation of newspapers, books, pictures, and blogs specifically relating to gentrification in East Harlem. Combined, these sources will help to get a comprehensive view of perceptions and concerns of area residents. However, due to the limited number of interviews performed, it is important to note that the views expressed in the interviews are in no way representative of all residents. Instead, these interviews seek to provide contradictions and highlights and also seek to reveal the complexities of information already known within the scholarship of gentrification in Harlem.