Ruminations of a Taco-Obsessed Philly Native

To close the narrative gap of poverty in America, Doug Levitt decided to take a trip around America by Greyhound Bus. He thought the trip would be a short one, but it lasted more than seven years. The experience turned into a project called “The Greyhound Diaries.” He spoke with various people from different backgrounds who all had one thing in common. The former journalist created a compilation of stories provided by the different people he met along the way.


Doug Levitt was born in Washington, D.C. He is the son of a former DC council member Carol Schwartz and her husband David Schwartz, he died when Levitt was 16. He attended Cornell University. He later attended the London School of Economics on a Fullbright Scholarship. He became a journalist and has reported


The “Greyhound Diaries” is styled after the 1930s federal initiative to record images and stories of poverty around the U.S. Levitt noticed that poverty in the United States was high and the story was not being told. As technology and social media began to link people together, he found that individuals who didn’t have access to these things were being left out. It’s one thing to be aware of poverty statistics, but he wondered what more could be done to understand the nature of the problem plaguing millions of Americans.


To get a closer look, he took the Greyhound and met people of many races and of different circumstances. The final results were an EP that was released in 2007; a book released in 2008; and photos, stories and videos released on the web.He captured over 20,000 images. His digital memoir serves as a bridge in the narrative gap. He has performed live across the U.S., usually for free. Some of his performances were given at homeless shelters and other venues across the U.S.


Doug Levitt put effort into creating a compelling piece of art that tells the great tale of American poverty as it exists today. His journey was over 70,000 miles, and he met people who were so poor, they never imagined buying a home. His adventure is available for others to learn about the impoverished of America.