Mapping Decline

Author: Colin Gordon
Publisher: University of Pennsylvania Press
ISBN: 0812291506
Size: 23.55 MB
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Once a thriving metropolis on the banks of the Mississippi, St. Louis, Missouri, is now a ghostly landscape of vacant houses, boarded-up storefronts, and abandoned factories. The Gateway City is, by any measure, one of the most depopulated, deindustrialized, and deeply segregated examples of American urban decay. "Not a typical city," as one observer noted in the late 1970s, "but, like a Eugene O'Neill play, it shows a general condition in a stark and dramatic form." Mapping Decline examines the causes and consequences of St. Louis's urban crisis. It traces the complicity of private real estate restrictions, local planning and zoning, and federal housing policies in the "white flight" of people and wealth from the central city. And it traces the inadequacy—and often sheer folly—of a generation of urban renewal, in which even programs and resources aimed at eradicating blight in the city ended up encouraging flight to the suburbs. The urban crisis, as this study of St. Louis makes clear, is not just a consequence of economic and demographic change; it is also the most profound political failure of our recent history. Mapping Decline is the first history of a modern American city to combine extensive local archival research with the latest geographic information system (GIS) digital mapping techniques. More than 75 full-color maps—rendered from census data, archival sources, case law, and local planning and property records—illustrate, in often stark and dramatic ways, the still-unfolding political history of our neglected cities.

Nobody

Author: Marc Lamont Hill
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
ISBN: 150112496X
Size: 33.89 MB
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Nobody is a powerful and eye-opening examination of the deeper meaning behind the string of deaths of unarmed citizens like Michael Brown, Eric Garner, and Freddie Gray. Unarmed citizens shot by police. Drinking water turned to poison. Mass incarcerations. We've heard the stories. Now public intellectual and acclaimed journalist Marc Lamont Hill offers a powerful, paradigm-shifting analysis of race and class in America, and what it means to be "Nobody." Through on-the-ground reporting and careful research, Hill shows how some American citizens are made vulnerable, exploitable, and disposable through the machinery of unregulated capitalism, public policy, and social practice. This Nobody class, Hill argues, has emerged over time, and forces in America have worked to preserve and exploit it in ways that are both humiliating and harmful. He carefully reconsiders the details of tragic events like the deaths of Michael Brown, Sandra Bland, and Freddie Gray, and the water crisis in Flint, Michigan, and delves deeply into a host of alarming trends including mass incarceration, overly aggressive policing, broken court systems, shrinking job markets, and the privatization of public resources, showing time and again the ways the current system is designed to worsen the plight of the vulnerable.

Grassroots At The Gateway

Author: Clarence Lang
Publisher: University of Michigan Press
ISBN: 0472026542
Size: 22.83 MB
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"This is a theoretically sophisticated and thoroughly documented historical case study of the movements for African American liberation in St. Louis. Through detailed analysis of black working class mobilization from the depression years to the advent of Black Power, award-winning historian Clarence Lang describes how the advances made in earlier decades were undermined by a black middle class agenda that focused on the narrow aims of black capitalists and politicians. The book is a major contribution to our understanding of the black working class insurgency that underpinned the civil rights and Black Power campaigns of the twentieth century." ---V. P. Franklin, University of California, Riverside "A major work of scholarship that will transform historical understanding of the pivotal role that class politics played in both civil rights and Black Power activism in the United States. Clarence Lang's insightful, engagingly written, and well-researched study will prove indispensable to scholars and students of postwar American history." ---Peniel Joseph, Brandeis University Breaking new ground in the field of Black Freedom Studies, Grassroots at the Gateway reveals how urban black working-class communities, cultures, and institutions propelled the major African American social movements in the period between the Great Depression and the end of the Great Society. Using the city of St. Louis in the border state of Missouri as a case study, author Clarence Lang undermines the notion that a unified "black community" engaged in the push for equality, justice, and respect. Instead, black social movements of the working class were distinct from---and at times in conflict with---those of the middle class. This richly researched book delves into African American oral histories, records of activist individuals and organizations, archives of the black advocacy press, and even the records of the St. Louis' economic power brokers whom local black freedom fighters challenged. Grassroots at the Gateway charts the development of this race-class divide, offering an uncommon reading of not only the civil rights movement but also the emergence and consolidation of a black working class. Clarence Lang is Assistant Professor in African American Studies and History at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Photo courtesy Western Historical Manuscript Collection, University of Missouri, St. Louis

Common Ground

Author: Geneviève Massard-Guilbaud
Publisher: Cambridge Scholars Publishing
ISBN: 1443826014
Size: 64.57 MB
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Today’s environmental problems—climate change, loss of biodiversity, polluted air, land, and water—all have their origins to a greater or lesser extent in how we have lived, played and worked. At a time when societies are confronted with the often dramatic consequences of past choices made in the fields of energy, technology, industry, agriculture, urbanisation and consumption, we need a history that casts more light on the ways in which unsustainable human-nature relationships came into being. This means forging stronger connections between social and environmental history. Common Ground opens up a dialogue between two sub-disciplines that to date have remained largely parallel endeavours, bringing together both established and younger scholars from both fields to explore how people’s everyday lives have connected to their environments—and with what effects. The book is organised in six sections: leisure and environment; nature and conservation; environmental conflicts; folk and scientific knowledge; environmental disasters; and energy, industry and urban infrastructure. By exploring the complex interplay between people’s day-to-day activities and ecological change, especially the values, beliefs and environmental experiences of ordinary men and women, we can better understand our past relationships with nature and perhaps make more informed planning and policy choices in the future.

St Louis

Author: John A. Wright Sr.
Publisher: Arcadia Publishing
ISBN: 1439631530
Size: 58.66 MB
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Since the founding of St. Louis, African Americans have lived in communities throughout the area. Although St. Louis' 1916 "Segregation of the Negro Ordinance" was ruled unconstitutional, African Americans were restricted to certain areas through real estate practices such as steering and red lining. Through legal efforts in the court cases of Shelley v. Kraemer in 1948, Jones v. Mayer in 1978, and others, more housing options became available and the population dispersed. Many of the communities began to decline, disappear, or experience urban renewal.

St Louis Politics

Author: Lana Stein
Publisher: Missouri History Museum
ISBN: 9781883982447
Size: 39.46 MB
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There are two defining moments in St. Louis political history: the 1876 divorce of the city from its county and the 1914 charter adoption. The institutions created at these times produced a factional and fragmented city government, thoroughly grounded in machine politics.Stein examines major themes in urban politics over the last century: race, redevelopment, suburbanization, and leadership. St. Louis mayors must deal with the comptroller and the president of the board of aldermen plus twenty-eight aldermen elected from wards. State law says the city must also have eight county offices—offices that perform county functions for the city. Power is difficult to amass in this factional and fragmented universe. In St. Louis politics, consensus building and alliances can prove to be more important than election-night victory.St. Louis's political culture stems from the city's fragmented nature. Its philosophy is often: “you go along to get along” or “go home from the dance with the guy that brung you.” Individual friendships are of great importance. Within this environment, class and racial cleavages also affect political decision making. Although St. Louis elected its first African American official in 1918, genuine political incorporation has been long in coming. Several decades ago, issues of class and race prevented St. Louis from adopting a new charter, with more streamlined public offices.Today, some St. Louisans cry out for home rule and governmental reform. Stein's work helps to demonstrate that institutions structure political behavior and outcomes. Changing institutions can make a difference, after political culture adapts to the new playing field.

Lion Of The Valley

Author: James Neal Primm
Publisher: Missouri History Museum
ISBN: 9781883982249
Size: 11.30 MB
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To begin the preface to the second edition of Lion of the Valley, James Neal Primm quotes the Reverend W. C. Bitting: "A city is more than an assemblage of buildings with streets between them. It has a soul, and an atmosphere, and a social significance to which all material things should be made to minister." If a history book can help define that atmosphere and significance, Lion of the Valley has done so for St. Louis, telling the story of a vibrant and unusual American city in an engaging yet scholarly manner. Primm establishes a general historical narrative of St. Louis from Pierre Laclede's first step from the bow of a bateau to the prototypes of MetroLink. As in most comprehensive accounts, Lion of the Valley focuses on the central institutions and personalities that have shaped the city, as well as the events and circumstances that brought fame, or fear, to the citizens of St. Louis. The Great Fire of 1849; the 1904 World's Fair; the machinations of the "Big Cinch"; the construction of the Gateway Arch; these and many other episodes from the city's colorful past come to life in the pages of Primm's book. This newly designed fourth edition offers a new preface from the author and a revised and expanded index in order to make the book more reader friendly, while maintaining the integrity of the original text. It will be indispensable to students of St. Louis history as well as amateurs interested in the development of this great city.

The Death And Life Of Great American Cities

Author: Jane Jacobs
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 052543285X
Size: 37.43 MB
Format: PDF, ePub
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Thirty years after its publication, The Death and Life of Great American Cities was described by The New York Times as "perhaps the most influential single work in the history of town planning....[It] can also be seen in a much larger context. It is first of all a work of literature; the descriptions of street life as a kind of ballet and the bitingly satiric account of traditional planning theory can still be read for pleasure even by those who long ago absorbed and appropriated the book's arguments." Jane Jacobs, an editor and writer on architecture in New York City in the early sixties, argued that urban diversity and vitality were being destroyed by powerful architects and city planners. Rigorous, sane, and delightfully epigrammatic, Jacobs's small masterpiece is a blueprint for the humanistic management of cities. It is sensible, knowledgeable, readable, indispensable. The author has written a new foreword for this Modern Library edition.