The City in History: Its Origins, Its Transformations, and Its Prospects

[PDF] The City in History: Its Origins, Its Transformations, and Its Prospects | by ✓ Lewis Mumford - The City in History: Its Origins, Its Transformations, and Its Prospects, The City in History Its Origins Its Transformations and Its Prospects The city s development from ancient times to the modern age Winner of the National Book Award One of the major works of scholarship of the twentieth century Christian Science Monitor Index illustratio
  • Title: The City in History: Its Origins, Its Transformations, and Its Prospects
  • Author: Lewis Mumford
  • ISBN: 9780156180351
  • Page: 399
  • Format: Paperback

[PDF] The City in History: Its Origins, Its Transformations, and Its Prospects | by ✓ Lewis Mumford, The City in History: Its Origins, Its Transformations, and Its Prospects, Lewis Mumford, The City in History Its Origins Its Transformations and Its Prospects The city s development from ancient times to the modern age Winner of the National Book Award One of the major works of scholarship of the twentieth century Christian Science Monitor Index illustrations [PDF] The City in History: Its Origins, Its Transformations, and Its Prospects | by ✓ Lewis Mumford - The City in History: Its Origins, Its Transformations, and Its Prospects, The City in History Its Origins Its Transformations and Its Prospects The city s development from ancient times to the modern age Winner of the National Book Award One of the major works of scholarship of the twentieth century Christian Science Monitor Index illustratio

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  • [PDF] The City in History: Its Origins, Its Transformations, and Its Prospects | by ✓ Lewis Mumford
    399 Lewis Mumford
The City in History: Its Origins, Its Transformations, and Its Prospects

About Author

  1. Lewis Mumford October 19, 1895 January 26, 1990 was an American historian and philosopher of technology and science Particularly noted for his study of cities and urban architecture, he had a tremendously broad career as a writer that also included a period as an influential literary critic Mumford was influenced by the work of Scottish theorist Sir Patrick Geddes.

One thought on “The City in History: Its Origins, Its Transformations, and Its Prospects

  1. Mumford is, in many ways, a total precursor to the postmodernists He maintains a skepticism towards Enlightenment as well as a strong respect for the subjective, vital forces of humanity Like any good contemporary social thinker, he recognizes that the parsing of culture into numeric bits and pieces is only one among many methods of attaining knowledge.There s a certain Eurocentrism which is to be expected for a writer from his era, but what troubles me is what I deem urbanocentrism He has a wa [...]


  2. Reviewing such a monumental book is in of itself a monumental task, one for which no one is up to task, least of all me There are many observations that you will simply not find in here No review, no summary, could ever substitute readingthisbook.The best one sentence summary of the book is given by this sentence When both the evil and the remedy are indistinguishable, one may be sure that a deep seated process is at work p 544To give a sense of scale to each potential reader the book is partiti [...]


  3. Lewis Mumford s The City in History is great fun to read He provides a dazzling show of erudition moving from De Tocqueville to Gilgamesh to Frederick Law Olmsted to Proust and to Vitruvius with dazzling speed somehow always tying his eclectic stable of references into a coherent narrative history In my case the pleasure of was greatly enhanced by the fact that my prejudices in most instances with those of Mumford which are 1 The Urban Sprawl of the twentieth century was out of control with prof [...]




  4. At a basic level, the book largely consists of the ramblings of a technophobe advocating the humanization of technology as if there were anything eminently human than technology Solutions to the city s woes housing, congestion are not provided, nor even suggested, but criticism is freely dished out As others have pointed out, Mumford was an advocate of the medieval city, and a organic approach to city planning, as opposed to the formalistic baroque, and indeed contemporary, method of planning [...]


  5. This book s importance is mainly historical As a work of urban planning analysis and history, it is a failure The City in History was written in an era when hand waving and appeal to common knowledge were acceptable ways to argue a point There is little to no primary source information or data to support Mumford s claims about the causes or impacts of various elements in the evolution of urban design E.g on p 448 9 he points to the addition of new crops to the food supply as a key force behind p [...]


  6. It s an obligation to read this book for every urban researcher to know what innovative thoughts are just reinventions of ones in the past.


  7. 1961 Copyright Harvest Book by Harcourt, Inc 575 pagesSummary The author describes the design of cities in Europe and the USA as a place for humans to live by periods ancient pre historical Mesopotamia, Egypt, Crete , classical historical, Greece and Rome medieval 8th to 16 centuries , baroque 16 18th centuries, the industrial revolution , suburbia and contemporary up to 1960 His descriptions include economic, religious, military and ethnic factors that influence the development of cities and th [...]


  8. Lewis Mumford tells us about the spiritual and cosmic origins of the city so that we can get a handle on how we can best forge the city of tomorrow To do that, he must scope out all of Western history, denoting where the city has been and what it could possibly become All that said, this was a long and often laborious read that has left me in many ways a bit befuddled than illuminated Mumford s own words often take off in poetic flights of fancy that are heroic or elegiac they are beautiful, bu [...]


  9. Astonishing in its breadth and clarity Although the book starts slow and, unfortunately, with some tired if not upsetting gender stereotypes , Mumford hits his stride with his description of Rome By the end of World War II, his prose his hard to match.


  10. First half is solid Second half is what you d expect from a white historian writing in the 1960s about urban issues.


  11. The only Mumford I ve read prior to this is a portion of his Technics and Civilization, which I ll have to revisit There, as here, he shows his age, through the use of unwieldy terms look in the index and you ll see Cybernetic Deity referenced twice and outmoded assumptions His methodology, however, and highly original observations, to say nothing of his fighting spirit, prove fortuitous.This book would be accurately titled The City in WESTERN History as he points out in the introduction, Mumfo [...]


  12. After two hundred pages I wanted to give this book five stars, but after finishing it, I was almost ready to give it three stars.This book is what it says it is, The City in History Starting in the neolithic era, Mumford marches through all of recorded time and place place being limited to the Near East, Greece, Rome, Europe and America to bring, you, the reader, his thoughts on the role and prospects of the city.In the beginning, it s an exhilerating ride Mumford is not shy about advancing bold [...]


  13. Mumford argues that cities arose as the centers of civilization because of the growth of stratified societies, where forced labor and slavery, coupled with destruction and war fueled that growth of cities He traces the prehistoric formation of cities, the ancient shaping of cities through war and need for labor, the rise of slave societies and free citizens in Ancient Greece and market places, and survival of Roman cities, the formation of medieval cities which he seems to believe is the ideal f [...]


  14. First to contend with is Mumford s pedantic tone Sometimes I couldn t help but imagine him as a stodgy British aristocrat ramblingly lecturing from the ample study of his prodigious manor looking for the least excuse to wax poetic about the greatness of Elizabethan England whilst ignoring as much as possible non Western European cities Even so, Mumford can write very beautifully when he s not side tracked and actually zeroes in on an interesting topic Unfortunately he s often side tracked and ju [...]


  15. The City in History is a work of impressive scope, presenting nothing less than the development of cities in the Western world from antiquity through the mid twentieth century.Overall, Mumford argues for cities based on human scale, organic development, and managed growth, with an attention to function, aesthetics, and human environmental needs This perspective leads him to favor medieval cities as a zenith of urban development, and often critique subsequent changes implemented during the Renais [...]


  16. I found this book fascinating when I had to read it for a college course 35 years ago Yes, it s been around for that long It was written in 1961 I never thought about cities in the same way again Mumford not only traces the development of cities, he also explains why they re integral to the functioning of society He writes about what cities get right as well as what they get wrong and offers suggestions for making them work better Some reviewers have said that the reading is dry, but I don t rem [...]


  17. A massive and intimidating book, but, once you get a bead on his Anglophilic prose style, Mumford is great at bringing to life the story of the city s evolution from necropolis for man s first structures were meant for the dead, not the living to walled stronghold to industrial megalopolis It s a damn big book Even the plates and captions would make a slim volume But, even though it s huge and high toned, it s surprisingly accessible Back in Mumford s day, you could be erudite without jargon, an [...]


  18. Bought this book for an Urban Studies class I took about 5 years ago It s really thick and I never needed to read the whole thing for class, but I ve started at the beginning and I m contemplating the different factors that drew humans together in cities Origins of civilizations and religions are interesting to think about while we ve been listening to Christopher Hitchens s God is not Great.


  19. A magisterial work, the historical study of the urban development from Ancient Egypt to Modern Era, though it is written in 1960 s, but the scope as well as the insight is timeless The great thing about this book is that it s not only dealing with urban theories, but moral as well as a study of civilization itself This work will stand in my shelves with pride for years to come Bought in Kinokuniya, Singapore


  20. This book is really dense It was not what I expected, and at first I wanted to toss it But as it got moving I got into it, and by the end I was absolutely captivated I was especially intreagued by the social commentery Mumsford has a talent for adding his opinions on the commendable and lamentable choices made by modern and historical society That fact added some intreaguing intellectual considerations to an otherwise densely academic endeavor.


  21. This book took me FOREVER to get through not because it s a boring read, but rather because it is so massive It transcends disciplines, incorporating elements of Anthropology, History, Urban Design, Architecture, Political ScienceThe highest praise this book receives is that it s still used in classrooms today across disciplines A must read.


  22. Mumford s style is fluid, always moving and carrying you along coherent, clear without being simple I don t know how or if his analysis of the urban environment have stood up over time, and if you re really into the subject his should probably only be a starting ground But what a way to begin, because I very much doubt the elaborations will be as beautifully written.


  23. One of the best books ever written about cities For those of us who think about and work on issues of urban development, we can only aspire to this combination of expansiveness, precision, humanism, and critical optimism Especially relevant and prescient with regards to the ties between technology and governance of cities.


  24. I never would have picked this book up had it not been for school I thoroughly enjoyed it The narrative type discussion on the evolution of the city made it a fascinating read, and there was plenty of information on the social structures and important cultural artefacts of each of the iterations of the city that were discussed.


  25. A book definitely not meant for the casual reader This is an understandably long and ponderous trek through the history of man s efforts at building cities If this is a subject you re interested in then this is a fascinating journey If it isn t your cup of tea then Uncle Mumfie, as he was affectionately called by my classmates and me, will bore you to tears.


  26. Lewis Mumford is my hero sadly, the days of grand narrative history are over nevertheless, people like Manuel Delanda or dare i say Jared Diamond offer hope that it is still possible allow big ideas to emerge from big history.


  27. Yes I had to read it for an urban geography course back in University over twenty years ago Possibly the only text I ever found so fascinating I wanted to read it cover to cover Just saw it on my bookshelf and remembered how much I value


  28. Tedious, pretensious and utterly revolutionary This book is relevant today then when it was published in 1961 Time has only further justified Mumford s analysis Very much worth the read if you can manage to get through it.


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