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Abstract

This paper formulates an updated, multidimensional model of poverty and discusses nursing research and practice implications based on the model. The older, traditional cultural and structural models of poverty are compared and contrasted with special attention to the perpetuating impact of stigmatization. From analysis of the older views of poverty, an updated model is proposed that emphasizes investigation of inter-relationships among environmental, individual/group, and mediating factors. Drawing from concepts of social learning theory, maladaptive and adaptive responses to the situational environments of the poor are explored. There is a focus on the major emotional responses to poverty such as depression, anomie, feelings of powerlessness, and low self-efficacy. Finally, specific nursing interventions for the client as well as at higher political levels are assessed.