more about cities

(both of these from

“Cities can’t win. When they do well, people resent them as citadels of inequality; when they do badly, they are cesspools of hopelessness….Cities are the contradictions of capitalism, spelled out in crowds. They are engines of prosperity and inequality in equal measure, and when the inequality tips poor they look unsavable; when it tips rich, they look unjust.” Adam Gopnik, “Naked Cities: The death and life of urban America,” The New Yorker (Oct 5 2015)

Gopnik’s suggested further reading:

  • Los Angeles: The Architecture of Four Ecologies (Reyner Banham, 1971)
  • City on a Grid: How New York Became New York (Gerard Koeppel, 2015)
  • The Cycling City: Bicycles & Urban America in the 1890s (Evan Friss, 2015)
  • Once in a Great City: A Detroit Story (David Maraniss, 2015)
  • The Death and Life of Great American Cities (Jane Jacobs, 1961) (“Both Banham and Jacobs believe in unplanned, organic, emergent cities. Banham’s ecstatic expressway is an expression of L.A.’s endless appetite for elsewhere; Jacobs’s beloved street corner expresses New York’s nightly celebration of community.”)
  • The Edge Becomes the Center: An Oral History of Gentrification in the Twenty-first Century (D.W. Gibson, 2015)
  • New York’s Poop Scoop Law: Dogs, the Dirt, and Due Process (New Directions in the Human-Animal Bond) (Michael Brandow, 2008)

“Our ability to form and maintain friendships is shaped in crucial ways by the physical spaces in which we live.” and “We do not encounter one another in cars. We grind along together anonymously, often in misery.” David Roberts, “How our housing choices make adult friendships more difficult,” Vox, (Oct 28 2105)

Roberts’ suggested further reading:

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