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The Creative Destruction of Manhattan, 1900-1940

 
지은이 : Max Page
출판사 : University Of Chicago Press
페이지수 : 317
ISBN : 0226644693
예상출고일 : 입금확인후 2일 이내
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도서가격 : 품절
     

 
Winner of the 2001 Spiro Kostof Book Award from the Society of Architectural Historians.

"It'll be a great place if they ever finish it," O. Henry wrote about New York City. This laconic remark captures the relentlessly transitory character of New York, and it points toward Max Page's synthetic perspective. Against the prevailing motif of a naturally expanding metropolis, Page argues that the early-twentieth-century city was dominated by the politics of destruction and rebuilding that became the hallmark of modern urbanism.

The oxymoron "creative destruction" suggests the tensions that are at the heart of urban life: between stability and change, between particular places and undifferentiated spaces, between market forces and planning controls, and between the "natural" and "unnatural" in city growth. Page investigates these cultural counterweights through case studies of Manhattan's development, with depictions ranging from private real estate development along Fifth Avenue to Jacob Riis's slum clearance efforts on the Lower East Side, from the elimination of street trees to the efforts to save City Hall from demolition.

In these examples some New Yorkers celebrate planning by destruction or marvel at the domestication of the natural environment, while others decry the devastation of their homes and lament the passing of the city's architectural heritage. A central question in each case is the role of the past in the shaping of collective memory뾵hich buildings are preserved? which trees are cut down? which fragments are enshrined in museums? Contrary to the popular sense of New York as an ahistorical city, the past뾞s recalled by powerful citizens뾵as, in fact, at the heart of defining how the city would be built.

Beautifully illustrated and written in clear, engaging prose, The Creative Destruction of Manhattan offers a new way of viewing the development of the American city.

"An excellent, multifaceted analysis of the process of urban development-not the inevitability of development but the choices individuals, organizations, and developers made that transformed Manhattan. The politics of place was, Max Page convincingly argues, an ongoing battle to define and thereby control the evolving shape of the city."뾆avid Schuyler, author of Apostle of Taste: Andrew Jackson Downing 1815-1852

"Max Page transcends the usual dichotomy between those who glorify destruction for the sake of change and those who would avoid both at all cost. The sizeable borderland between architecture and preservation reveals new dimensions about science and history, innovation and memory, the cities that have been, and those yet to come."뾉wendolyn Wright, author of The Politics of Design in French Colonial Urbanism

"A sober, humane explanation of how and why New York City became a place of continuous rebuilding. . . . For real or armchair New Yorkers, the whole package is a treat."?I>Kirkus Reviews

Max Page teaches history at Yale University.

"I took two stories from Creative Destruction.

As a native New Yorker, I found this book a wonderful and thorough analysis of major and minor events that changed New York. These events are not simplified; Max Page tells a story that includes the conflicts and interdependency of commerce, preservation, and progress.

As a San Franciscan watching my newly-adopted city go through dramatic changes, I am given guidance and insight into the effects of such turbulence. Max Page helps me identify shortsighted actions as well as deal with inevitability. At the very least, I am more aware; at best, I am a better citizen.

For ALL of us living in urban areas going through fast changes, Creative Destruction is great reading. "

"Dr. Page has created a dynamic, readable exploration of the history of design and construction in what is arguably the modern world's greatest city. His vivid descriptions and insightful analyses are complemented by a treasury of remarkable photographs and other illustrations. This extremely readable, intelligent book is an indispensible resource for anyone who claims to truly know the Big Apple. "

"Max Page discusses how the notion of demolition has fit into New York public policy over the decades. The topics of the eight chapters are, after an introductory chapter: the work of the Fifth Avenue Association, a critique of Jacob Riis' views on slum clearance, the controversy over saving the old City Hall, the history of the Museum of the City of New York, policy regarding trees in parks and along streets, a critique of Stokes' multi-volume "Iconography" treatise, and the symbolism of the children's book, "The Little House." The book has over 70 illustrations, mostly period photos of streetscapes and key buildings.


Parts of the book are fascinating, especially Page's critique of the writings of Jacob Riis, the 19th century Danish-American writer and reformer. But as the list above demonstrates, many of the topics of this book are simply too esoteric and remote to be of interest, even to a devoted enthusiast of New York history. "

   
 
   
 
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