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Urban Disorder and the Shape of Belief: The Great Chicago Fire, the Haymarket Bomb, and the Model Town of Pullman [Paperback]

Carl Smith
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)


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Urban Disorder and the Shape of Belief: The Great Chicago Fire, the Haymarket Bomb, and the Model Town of Pullman, Second Edition Urban Disorder and the Shape of Belief: The Great Chicago Fire, the Haymarket Bomb, and the Model Town of Pullman, Second Edition
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Book Description

June 1, 1996 0226764176 978-0226764177 New edition
The Great Chicago Fire of 1871, the Haymarket bombing of 1886, and the making and unmaking of the model town of Pullman--these remarkable events in what many considered the quintessential American city forced people across the country to confront the disorder that seemed inevitably to accompany urban growth and social change. In this book, Carl Smith explores the imaginative dimensions of these events as he traces the evolution of beliefs that increasingly linked city, disorder, and social reality in the minds of Americans. Studying a remarkable range of writings and illustrations, as well as protests, public gatherings, trials, hearings, and urban reform and construction efforts, Smith argues that these three events--and the public awareness of the them--not only informed one another, but collectively shaped how Americans saw, and continue to see, the city.



Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Carl Smith is the Franklyn Bliss Snyder Professor of English and American Studies and professor of history at Northwestern University. His books include three prize-winning volumes: Chicago and the American Literary Imagination, 1880-1920; Urban Disorder and the Shape of Belief: The Great Chicago Fire, the Haymarket Bomb, and the Model Town of Pullman; and The Plan of Chicago: Daniel Burnham and the Remaking of the American City, the latter two published by the University of Chicago Press.

Product Details

  • Paperback: 403 pages
  • Publisher: University of Chicago Press; New edition edition (June 1, 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0226764176
  • ISBN-13: 978-0226764177
  • Product Dimensions: 8.9 x 5.9 x 1.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,787,614 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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4.0 out of 5 stars actually related in the book's manner ? August 28, 2008
Format:Paperback
Smith has made perhaps a unique association between the events chronicled in his book. The 1871 Chicago Fire. The 1886 Haymarket bombing. And the making of Pullman town. His descriptions of each are well done and quite readable. For this alone, it can worthwhile to peruse his writings, as he explains the circumstances of each. Of the events, perhaps the Chicago Fire is the best remembered. While the other 2 are relegated to the scrutiny of professional historians.

I am unsure that despite his eloquent arguments, the events can be tied together as he so disposes. The presumed urban outlook shared by Americans of a century ago was shaped by many things. Maybe the events in the book were influential, but not decisive.
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