This week I chose to review an article in City Paper, mainly because I never read that particular publication. I was hoping to stumble across an article that was in-depth and cheekier than those one finds in mainstream news. I think I found it.
I was first hooked by the compelling photo, actually taken by Temple alum Neal Santos. The picture depicts a man who looks grief-stricken and pensive as he walks by a charred rowhome. The photo perfectly sets the mood for the article: ominous, painful and full of complexities.
Writer Tom Dreisbach opens by painting a picture (I can always appreciate a good visual) of a fateful night last August. A deadly fire broke out in a Philadelphia Housing Authority (PHA) home on 19th and Carpenter streets, claiming the life of an eleven-year-old girl and forcing residents to jump out their windows to safety. Dreisbach paints this picture vividly, almost as though one can hear the screams filling the air and the ensuing trauma felt by the entire neighborhood.
I felt like Dreisbach did his research for this article, filling it with specific details about PHA and the aftermath of the fire. Throughout the article was a bit of “he said, she said,” which I feel effectively depicts the complicated situation. Dreisbach breaks his story components down, gives the neighborhood a voice, and shares with readers revelations about the shortcomings of a city program.
– Julie Gargotta