Synopses & Reviews
This book presents a cross-cultural approach to the study of urban space. Essays written by major contributors in contemporary urban studies provide a range of case studies from Asia, Latin America, North America, and Europe to address important questions about space and power, processes of change, aesthetics and attitudes toward space, and social divisions expressed through urban life. The essays fall into three interlocking sections: conceptual and linguistic approaches to urban space; visual and social examinations of world cities; and policy examinations of spatial analyses. Together with the jointly compiled bibliography, this collection of essays is designed to stimulate comparative debate and identify new areas for urban research.
Essays contrast empty space in Barcelona and Savannah, explore the concept of healthy and unhealthy urban environments in the classical writings and in modern-day Vienna, and develop a model of space for Shanghai from the point of view of privacy. The subcultural ethos characterizing Tokyo and the castle as a symbol for the community in Japan are two more essay topics. The plaza in Spanish-American towns, the outdoor spaces in Italy (balcony, street, courtyard), and the school in Honduras are sites for socio-cultural analyses in three more essays. The last group of essays focus on discourses in urban planning, especially the responses of people to the growth, marketing, and decay of residential places. African-American neighborhoods and waterfront development provide examples for this section. These essays in their theoretical and geographical breadth make significant strides in defining the cultural meaning of urban space. They will be read with interest by city planners, ecologists, and other social scientists involved in finding human solutions to the metropolitan environment.
This book presents a cross-cultural approach to the study of urban space from a variety of theoretical and practical perspectives. Essays written by major contributors to contemporary urban studies explore conceptual and linguistic interpretations of urban space, visual and social examinations of world cities, and policy issues in spatial analysis. Using case studies from Asia, Latin America, North America, and Europe, the authors raise important questions about space and power, processes of change, aesthetics and attitudes toward space, and social divisions expressed through urban life. This collection endorses the centrality of cross-cultural investigation and paves the way for comparative debate which will lead to new areas of urban research.
A cross-cultural approach to the study of urban space using linguistic, visual, and social analyses.
About the Author
ROBERT ROTENBERG is Associate Professor of Anthropology and Director of the International Studies Program at DePaul University.GARY W. McDONOGH is Visiting Professor and Director of the Growth and Structure of Cities Program at Bryn Mawr.
Table of Contents
Introduction by Robert Rotenberg
The Language of Place
The Geography of Emptiness by Gary W. McDonogh
On the Salubrity of Sites by Robert Rotenberg
Chinese Privacy by Deborah Pellow
Rediscovering Shitamachi: Subculture, Class, and Tokyo's "Traditional" Urbanism by Theodore C. Bestor
Place in the City
We Have Always Lived Under the Castle: Historical Symbols and the Maintenance of Meaning by John Mock
Cultural Meaning of the Plaza: The History of the Spanish American Gridplan-Plaza Urban Design by Setha M. Low
Italian Urbanscape: Intersection of Private and Public by Donald S. Pitkin
Mapping Contested Terrains: Schoolrooms and Streetcorners in Urban Belize by Charles Rutheiser
Planning and Response
Beyond Built Form and Culture in the Anthropological Study of Residential Community Spaces by Margaret Rodman
Housing Abandonment in Inner-City Black Neighborhoods: A Case Study of the Effects of the Dual Housing Market by Susan D. Greenbaum
Access to the Waterfront: Transformations of Meaning on the Toronto Lakeshore by Matthew Cooper
Public Access on the Urban Waterfront: A Question of Vision by R. Timothy Sieber