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The Death and Life of Great American Cities (1961)

Tekijä: Jane Jacobs

Muut tekijät: Katso muut tekijät -osio.

JäseniäKirja-arvostelujaSuosituimmuussijaKeskimääräinen arvioMaininnat
4,238392,797 (4.32)68
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, Jane Jacobs's tour de force is a blueprint for the humanistic management of cities. It remains sensible, knowledgeable, readable, and indispensable. --- Book Description.… (lisätietoja)
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englanti (37)  katalaani (1)  Kaikki kielet (38)
Näyttää 1-5 (yhteensä 38) (seuraava | näytä kaikki)
A classic “common-sense” demolition of the orthodoxies of mid-twentieth-century urban planning. Jacobs argues that planners trying to improve city neighbourhoods should abandon their giant master-plans and the quest for theoretical perfection, which have so often resulted in unliveable spaces full of terrible social problems, and instead focus on observing the way residents are actually using the places they live in now, and make small, incremental changes targeted at helping people to improve their current surroundings. For her, the essential qualities a neighbourhood needs to survive and function well are high population density, diversity of uses, and the flexibility to respond to changing demands. Those things usually get broken if you bulldoze a neighbourhood and try to rebuild the whole place in one go.

Jacobs’s ideal neighbourhood, where kids play in the street under the watchful eyes of neighbours and local tradespeople and there is a constant coming and going on foot between homes, shops, workplaces, schools, bars and restaurants, is probably rather unrealistic sixty years on, and of course it was only ever meant to apply to inner-city areas — as far as she is concerned, the suburbs are a lost cause anyway. But the arguments she makes against single-use zoning and against inflexible large-scale projects embodying someone’s paternalistic vision of how (other) people should live remain very valid. And there’s a lot of detailed and mostly sensible-sounding advice in the book about things like street layout, rent subsidies, lending policies, how to lay out parks, and much more. ( )
  thorold | May 12, 2024 |
Very informative, but got repetitive after a while. One can only use the adjective 'lively' so many times before it gets old... ( )
  andyinabox | Jan 17, 2024 |
Deserving of its reputation as one of the most important books ever written in the field of American City Planning. It is a fascinating book, and I will never look at cities the same after reading it.

Jane Jacobs does a remarkable job of breaking down an incredible complex topic, making easily digestible, providing examples of good and bad, and building off of the idea in order to introduce her next idea.

She is not a planner, or engineer, or academic. Just a concerned citizen, who has a really good eye for understanding the complex processes of cities, and how they function. She also has a pretty compelling way with words, I really enjoyed some of her prose at times, and her extended metaphors could really have a lot of teeth. ( )
  Andjhostet | Jul 4, 2023 |
In an age when architects and planners were spouting all kinds of brave-new-world nonsense (or mindlessly absorbing it, or even worse – building it), Jacobs burst onto the scene with an incredible dose of sanity mixed with common sense and wisdom, carefully observing the urban environment and drawing a host of remarkably sensible conclusions. For some reason we architects seem always at risk of believing our own nuttiest fantasies. Jacobs is a perennial corrective. ( )
  garbagedump | Dec 9, 2022 |
The first half of this book is a phenomenal introduction to thinking about /how to live in a city./ On every page I was struck by an insight that codified what was the difference between cities I loved living in, and ones I didn't. Furthermore, the same analysis can be viewed as advice about how to choose a place to live, and what to do when you get there. As someone working on a big, unstructured move of my own in the next few months, this is particularly timely advice.

The second half is very clearly not meant for me; it talks about what to do with a city in order to avoid its death and promote its liveliness. While this is certainly an interesting topic, it's not one I have much agency over, nor do I plan to ever be in such a situation. After several chapters with low insight density, I decided to skim the remainder of the book, and I don't feel like I missed much.

Jacobs' argument rests on four pillars:
1) city streets are not just thoroughfares, they are where life in the city is /actively lived/
2) a neighborhood must bring in diverse people for diverse reasons in order to make streets safe
3) blocks must be short in order to facilitate many paths through them
4) there is a critical mass of humans necessary for city life, and thus high density residences are a necessity

Amidst these points, Jacobs discusses how parks fail, raising children in urban environments, what's wrong with housing projects, the ruinous effects of borders on neighborhoods and districts, along with a bevy of other somewhat tangential points. I suspect if I were a city planner I would have found a lot more value in these sections, but, well, I'm not and so I didn't.

In terms of how this book actually changed my thoughts on choosing a place to live, the following insights were particularly influential to me:

* When choosing where to live, work top down. Select a city based on stereotypes about the people who live there, and then drill down from there. Don't begin with the question of "what do I like in a city" and find a place that optimizes that.
* Life occurs in densely populated streets. Find a neighborhood that reflects this, and make an effort to spend your time outside.
* Neighborhoods run by way of an implicit, unofficial local government of citizens who have the interests of the neighborhood at heart. Think small business owners, church leaders, home owners, postal workers, etc. Being such a public figure is not a particularly hard thing to do, and should be strived for if you're looking for a sense of belonging, because everybody knows these people.
* Take responsibility for your neighborhood. Help people who look lost, even if they don't ask for it; keep an eye out for suspicious characters; let people know if they've missed the last bus; etc.
* Avoid places with large amounts of concurrent growth; these places will lose their diversity and die sooner than later.
* Old buildings gain economic value over time, in terms of the riskier ventures their low rent can afford.
* Aim to live on the seam between two neighborhoods; the juxtaposition of the two cultures is what creates an interesting place to live.

I'd rate the first half of this book as one of the top five books I've ever read. Very strongly recommended. ( )
2 ääni isovector | Dec 13, 2020 |
Näyttää 1-5 (yhteensä 38) (seuraava | näytä kaikki)
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» Lisää muita tekijöitä (13 mahdollista)

Tekijän nimiRooliTekijän tyyppiKoskeeko teosta?Tila
Jane Jacobsensisijainen tekijäkaikki painoksetlaskettu
Cavalheiro, Maria Estela HeiderKääntäjämuu tekijäeräät painoksetvahvistettu
Epstein, JasonJohdantomuu tekijäeräät painoksetvahvistettu
Facetti, GermanoKannen suunnittelijamuu tekijäeräät painoksetvahvistettu
Paquot, ThierryJälkisanatmuu tekijäeräät painoksetvahvistettu
Parin, ClaireKääntäjämuu tekijäeräät painoksetvahvistettu
Rosa, Carlos S. MendesKääntäjämuu tekijäeräät painoksetvahvistettu
Sinun täytyy kirjautua sisään voidaksesi muokata Yhteistä tietoa
Katso lisäohjeita Common Knowledge -sivuilta (englanniksi).
Teoksen kanoninen nimi
Alkuteoksen nimi
Teoksen muut nimet
Alkuperäinen julkaisuvuosi
Henkilöt/hahmot
Tiedot englanninkielisestä Yhteisestä tiedosta. Muokkaa kotoistaaksesi se omalle kielellesi.
Tärkeät paikat
Tiedot englanninkielisestä Yhteisestä tiedosta. Muokkaa kotoistaaksesi se omalle kielellesi.
Tärkeät tapahtumat
Kirjaan liittyvät elokuvat
Epigrafi (motto tai mietelause kirjan alussa)
Tiedot englanninkielisestä Yhteisestä tiedosta. Muokkaa kotoistaaksesi se omalle kielellesi.
"Until lately the best thing that I was able to think of in favor of civilization, apart from blind acceptance of the order of the universe, was that it made possible the artist, the poet, the philosopher, and the man of science. But I think that is not the greatest thing. Now I believe that the greatest thing is a matter that comes directly home to us all. When it is said that we are too much occupied with the means of living to live, I answer that the chief worth of civilization is just that is makes the means of living more complex; that it calls for great and combined intellectual efforts, instead of simple, uncoordinated ones, in order that the crowd may be fed and clothed and housed and moved from place to place. Because more complex and intense intellectual efforts mean a fuller and richer life. They mean more life. Life is an end in itself, and the only question as to whether it is worth living is whether you have enough of it.

"I will add but a word. We are all very near despair. The sheathing that floats us over its waves is compounded of hope, faith in the unexplainable worth and sure issue of effort, and the deep, sub-conscious content which comes from the exercise of our powers."

-Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.
Omistuskirjoitus
Tiedot englanninkielisestä Yhteisestä tiedosta. Muokkaa kotoistaaksesi se omalle kielellesi.
To New York City
where I came to seek my fortune
and found it by finding
Bob, Jimmy, Ned and Mary
for whom this is written too
Ensimmäiset sanat
Tiedot englanninkielisestä Yhteisestä tiedosta. Muokkaa kotoistaaksesi se omalle kielellesi.
This book is an attack on current city planning and rebuilding. It is also, and mostly, an attempt to introduce new principles of city planning and rebuilding, different and even opposite from those now taught in everything from schools of architecture and planning to the Sunday supplements and women's magazines.
Sitaatit
Tiedot englanninkielisestä Yhteisestä tiedosta. Muokkaa kotoistaaksesi se omalle kielellesi.
"Cities need old buildings so badly it is probably impossible for vigorous streets and districts to grow without them. By old buildings I mean not museum-piece old buildings, not old buildings in an excellent state of rehabilitation — although these make fine ingredients — but also a good lot of plain, ordinary, low-value old buildings, including some rundown old buildings....

Even the enterprises that can support new construction in cities need old construction in their immediate vicinity. Otherwise they are part of a total attraction and total environment that is economically too limited — and therefore functionally too limited to be lively, interesting and convenient. Flourishing diversity anywhere in a city means the mingling of high-yield, middling-yield, low-yield and no-yield enterprises."
As in the pseudoscience of bloodletting, just so in the pseudoscience of city rebuilding and planning, years of learning and a plethora of subtle and complicated dogma have arisen on a foundation of nonsense.
As in all Utopias, the right to have plans of any significance belonged only to the planners in charge.
This is the most amazing event in the whole sorry tale: that finally people who sincerely wanted to strengthen great cities should adopt recipes frankly devised for undermining their economies and killing them.
the public peace . . . is kept primarily by an intricate, almost unconscious, network of voluntary controls and standards among the people themselves, and enforced by the people themselves.
Viimeiset sanat
Tiedot englanninkielisestä Yhteisestä tiedosta. Muokkaa kotoistaaksesi se omalle kielellesi.
(Napsauta nähdäksesi. Varoitus: voi sisältää juonipaljastuksia)
Erotteluhuomautus
Julkaisutoimittajat
Kirjan kehujat
Tiedot englanninkielisestä Yhteisestä tiedosta. Muokkaa kotoistaaksesi se omalle kielellesi.
Alkuteoksen kieli
Kanoninen DDC/MDS
Kanoninen LCC
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, Jane Jacobs's tour de force is a blueprint for the humanistic management of cities. It remains sensible, knowledgeable, readable, and indispensable. --- Book Description.

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