16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
The next great buzzword,
This review is from: The Great Inversion and the Future of the American City (Hardcover)
This is an excellent book, written with the data in mind but without the more heavy-handed charts and foot notes that often can be presented in such texts. Much as "edge cities" was coined in the late 1980's and came into common usage, so too based on the context of the research, will the term "the great inversion" come to be the model or some variant in future parlance.
The author begins with a tour through 19th century Paris and Vienna and then moves chapter by chapter through different American cities or clusters of similar cities and their attempts to stave off decline or simply revitalize. Some will criticize the absence of sweeping praise or condemnation. For me, this is a pleasant aspect of the book. It is a completely readable text for all audiences, served up with fair critiques of the New Urbanists and the current American suburban mindset with all its contradictions.
The author's research is most fascinating with his projections about the make-up of the future vibrant cities. One would have suspected them to have been simply class oriented, but according to the author they will also be very skewed ethnically. This would be a significant and ground-shifting movement which will have implications on political systems, school systems, economics and the city as we have grown accustomed to it.