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The Life and Death of Great American Cities

Jane Jacobs • 1961

I think I liked this book more as a cultural artifact than as an actual piece of reading material that I could usefully recommend to others. I say that coming from a place where I fundamentally agree with Jacobs; I think her arguments against modernism, while undoubtedly influential, are more concisely and persuasively evolved upon in Seeing Like A State ↗, and her proposals for a better path forward are couched in anecdata. (And I want her to be right — I just wasn't particularly swayed by the same references to the same three neighborhoods!)

Ultimately, her ethos is better represented as an antithesis than a thesis, and you can probably do without the sheer size of the book. (Still, it is — and I feel guilty saying this — one of those books that I feel proud to have rea

4/24/2021
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Non-Fiction
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