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  An area of overcrowded, dilapidated and usually old housing occupied by people who can afford only the cheapest dwellings available in the urban area, generally in or close to the inner city. The term usually implies a poverty-ridden population, an unhealthy environment, and a district rife with crime and vice (see also cycle of poverty), and is often associated with concentrations of people in certain ethnic groups, although the terms ghetto and slum should not be used as synonyms. (RJJ)  



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