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Arrival City: How the Largest Migration in History Is Reshaping Our World Paperback – April 3, 2012
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From Publishers Weekly
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
“A game changer. . . . Mightily researched, lofty and humane, Arrival City is packed with salient detail and could hardly be more timely.”
—The New York Times
“Arrival City presents an optimistic and humane view of global urbanization. Let’s hope urban planners and politicians pay attention.”
—The Wall Street Journal
“With the voice of a seasoned reporter, Saunders writes compelling, firsthand narratives describing the challenges and triumphs of migrant families from across the globe.”
—The San Francisco Chronicle
“Arrival City asks that we take a closer look at urbanization before its mismanagement is further mistaken for the thing itself, and to recognize that a citified future is not necessarily a doomed one.”
“One of the year’s most engaging and important works of nonfiction.”
—The Independent (London)
“A timely contribution to the discourse on global cities. . . . Saunders offers a readable, immediate social history.”
—The Globe and Mail
“A brisk world tour of enormous urban-fringe neighborhoods populated by people who have left the countryside. . . . Perhaps because Saunders is a journalist who isn’t selling his advice, his version of the city is . . . more persuasive.”
—The New Yorker
“One does not need to be a cynic, alas, to suspect that cities and nations may not apply their best policies to their worst neighborhoods. But for those who are wise enough to try, Saunders has written the manual.”
“Skilled in both colourful reportage and sustaining a good argument, [Saunders] provides a badly needed progressive and optimistic narrative about our future. . . . This may be the best popular book on cities since Jane Jacobs's The Death and Life of Great American Cities. . . . Few books can make rationalists feel optimistic and empowered for the future. [Arrival City] does.”
—The Guardian (London)
“Saunders’s approach is through anecdotes and vignettes, but . . . they cumulate into a persuasive whole. . . . Saunders’s practical suggestions for helping immigrants . . . are sure to attract attention. . . . [A] highly readable book.”
“A masterpiece of reporting, one of the most valuable and lucid works on public policy published anywhere in years.”
“Important. . . . Saunders’s greatest strength lies in the global breadth of his reportage. . . . His evocative descriptions . . . transform a complex, serious subject into a page-turning read.”
“A broadly researched, passionate and portentous call for a new way to look at the experience of migrants. It is essential reading . . . for all who look at the future of cities with a mix of hope and fear.”
—Winnipeg Free Press
“[An] incisive study of worldwide rural-to-urban migration, its complex social mechanisms and the consequences of institutional neglect. . . . An essential work for those who pay attention to the effects of globalization—which is, or at least should be, nearly everyone.”
“Doug Saunders is neither a glum pessimist nor a glib optimist and Arrival City will not please closed minds. But this provocative, disturbing, and exhilarating book is a delight for thoughtful readers. Indeed, it is essential. Migration is reshaping the world and, as Saunders demonstrates, the choices we make today will determine whether it brings prosperity or catastrophe tomorrow.”
—Dan Gardner, author of The Science of Fear
“Arrival City is scarier than a dark urban fantasy and more gritty than the bottom of a demographer’s coffee cup. It’s also highly topical, as population growth and immigration are subjects of heated debate worldwide.”
More About the Author
Top Customer Reviews
Almost everyone in the world is being affected, in some way, by this movement. They may live where new people are arriving. They may be the ones arriving. Or, perhaps, they are ones left behind, but benefitting from funds sent back.
Some of these relocations are successful. Others fail dismally. It is important that these inevitable movements of people do succeed because it influences the well being of everyone in a city, region, country, or, even, the world. Saunders takes a look at successes and failures over time and points out the important differences. There is a lot to be learned here.
However, I was very disappointed in the writing style. You would expect a respected journalist to write with clarity and a crisp lively style. Instead Saunders is prone to long, convoluted, run-on sentences that often take a careful parsing to find what he really intends to say. To compound matters, the huge numbers of asides, included in parenthesis, are nearly as complex as the rest of their sentence.
So, be forewarned. This book is definitely worth reading, but be prepared to work hard to get the valuable information it has to offer.
The good news is that the "meat" in the book makes reading it well worth reading.
The author's purpose is to tell us all about "arrival cities," their characteristics, how they can be made to work and how they can lead to failure. He also wants to give us examples of these communities in various places around the world. We get numerous detailed stories of people who move from a village to its related city. Arrival cities have the following characteristics:
* There is a communications network between the village(s) and the destination city.
* This network provides housing, job leads, community and security in the city.
* Those who move to the city send money back to the village to improve things there.
* Successful arrival cities allow a path to citizenship for foreigners, the possibility of owning a home, the opportunity to open a business and to get loans, and a path to the middle class, if not for the original immigrants, then for their offspring.Read more ›
What I enjoyed about it specifically
- It had a main term "arrival city" and the author explains and illustrates why these places are so important. Arrival cities are places where people(or really more often families) can transition their lives so that in a generation or two, despite early hardships, their rural-to-urban migration has transformed their lives from simple survival to ones of relative comfort. If this is not how the area is functioning, it is not an arrival city, it is just a slum or ethnic enclave that is ultimately a failure both for its residents, and for that society as a whole.
- The author examines these places not just to show the reader the pains of poverty, but to really try and discover why some of them "work" while others don't. Mainly this revolves around having government policies that accept the reality of rapid urbanization and looking to what policies have worked well elsewhere. The author does well at constructing an argument for how to best do this (which most of the arrival city residents he spoke with would agree)- basically give these people some basic economic and political rights, relax some rules like land zoning, and these folks will pull themselves up.Read more ›
As the population grows and people leave one type of life for another, it definitely affects the way the world looks as well as how we are able to deal with others. Saunders takes us into cultures and lands where we might not think we have any connection, and then he shows us how what happens halfway around the world does affect our lifestyle here.
You have only to look at the headlines of the day to see it to be true. Saunders' book is playing out right in front of us, and through his research we can better understand it and adapt rather than be left in the dark.
One thing that struck me is something that is universal: We are all busy, going about our lives, and sometimes we know so little about our very own surroundings. Forget about another country. To some, there own city is foreign to them. Looking at it through the lenses of Saunder's work, we can see that there are really more things that connect us than divide us.
ARRIVAL CITY isn't a book you will just skim through and put away. This is one you will be talking about for quite some time.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Great read, highly relevant to contemporary events, and almost prophetic with regards to the attacks in Paris; the perpetrators not being 'rural, medieval' immigrants and refugees... Read morePublished 2 months ago by Preferred Customer
Clear explanation of immigration's effects on cities, and cities' role in the changing lives of rural-to-urban migrants worldwide. I learned a lot.Published 4 months ago by Cynthia Engquistcindy
this is very helpful, due to the changing nature of demographics and preferences of X and Y generations!Published 5 months ago by Randy
A very good analysis of a major urbanization trend, all over the world, based on many case studies in developed and developing countries. Highly recommended.Published 8 months ago by Daniel Biau
Insightful and critical analysis of how cities of arrival develop into vibrant metropolises or get stuck as deprived slums. Read morePublished 8 months ago by paola
I benefited from this book.
Overall, I found 'Arrival City' to be an insightful and well-researched text, as to provide a solid window into the obscure world of the... Read more
I'm extremely interested on world events, and how populations affect them. Questions recently in the Economy and with Immigration Control made me more so curious, this book... Read morePublished 19 months ago by J W Bfield
I'm only halfway though this book but find it quite provocative. In his view, "arrival cities" benefit both rural people looking to move into more middle class lifestyles,... Read morePublished on May 12, 2013 by Anne B Gass
Interesting book and concept, but once you have an idea of the author's premise, the theme becomes somewhat redundant. Read morePublished on January 7, 2013 by MWC