Enter your mobile number below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
Getting the download link through email is temporarily not available. Please check back later.

  • Apple
  • Android
  • Windows Phone
  • Android

To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.

The Reluctant Metropolis: The Politics of Urban Growth in Los Angeles

4.6 out of 5 stars 13 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0801865060
ISBN-10: 0801865069
Why is ISBN important?
ISBN
This bar-code number lets you verify that you're getting exactly the right version or edition of a book. The 13-digit and 10-digit formats both work.
Scan an ISBN with your phone
Use the Amazon App to scan ISBNs and compare prices.
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Buy used On clicking this link, a new layer will be open
$9.73 On clicking this link, a new layer will be open
Buy new On clicking this link, a new layer will be open
$28.80 On clicking this link, a new layer will be open
More Buying Choices
27 New from $9.41 51 Used from $2.65
Free Two-Day Shipping for College Students with Prime Student Free%20Two-Day%20Shipping%20for%20College%20Students%20with%20Amazon%20Student


Featured architecture & urban design books
Explore featured titles on architecture and urban design.
$28.80 FREE Shipping. Only 9 left in stock (more on the way). Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.
click to open popover

Frequently Bought Together

  • The Reluctant Metropolis: The Politics of Urban Growth in Los Angeles
  • +
  • Reinventing Los Angeles: Nature and Community in the Global City (Urban and Industrial Environments)
  • +
  • Southland
Total price: $67.83
Buy the selected items together

Editorial Reviews

Review

The Reluctant Metropolis is a welcome addition to the growing literature of place. Bill Fulton brings verve and lucidity to the politics of land use, a mega-issue ready to explode in the years ahead.

(James Howard Kunstler, author of The Geography of Nowhere and Home from Nowhere)

A surprisingly lively case study of the battles and alliances of politics, business and people that formed―or deformed―a great American city.

(Publishers Weekly (starred review))

One of the most entertaining and thought-provoking books I have read in a long time about urban growth and change... Important reading for anyone interested in contemporary urban development. [Fulton] tells a story that may sound uniquely Los Angeles, but really applies to every growing city in America.

(Richard Peiser APA Journal)

From the Publisher

***"A surprisingly lively case study of the battles and alliances of politics, business and people that formed—or deformed—a great American city." —Publishers Weekly (starred review)

"The Reluctant Metropolis is a welcome addition to the growing literature of place. Bill Fulton brings verve and lucidity to the politics of land use, a mega-issue ready to explode in the years ahead."—James Howard Kunstler, author of The Geography of Nowhere and Home from Nowhere

"One of the most entertaining and thought-provoking books I have read in a long time about urban growth and change . . . Important reading for anyone interested in contemporary urban development. [Fulton] tells a story that may sound uniquely Los Angeles, but really applies to every growing city in America."—Richard Peiser, APA Journal

NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE

New York Times best sellers
Browse the New York Times best sellers in popular categories like Fiction, Nonfiction, Picture Books and more. See more

Product Details

  • Paperback: 424 pages
  • Publisher: Johns Hopkins University Press (August 9, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0801865069
  • ISBN-13: 978-0801865060
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.8 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #795,583 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
The power of this book is the "up close and personal" portrait it gives of the people and events that shaped the modern era of Los Angeles and the sinking of the illusion of eternal land. What a story he tells, including naming the key players and their real estate interests, especially the complicit role of planning professionals and politicians.

Changes in the region take place so quickly that current events need a scorecard and a constant updating from this traveling historian who puts miles on his car that are needed just to keep up with it all, and to keep us conscious of what is happening before our eyes. Unlike many of the fashionably post-modern critics with their morbid fascination for the contradictions and the big picture, Fulton doesn't theorize or jargonize about the City. Like a hunter who tracks his prey by following all the little bent branches and signs of habitation, he takes us to the places that make up the region, Bell, Commerce, Lakewood, Lynwood, and like a good hunter, he does not stand apart from his prey. Fulton shows basic empathy for all the misguided professionals and greedy politicians who unconsciously and consciously sullied and exploited the region, as well as the naiveté and the shortage of savvy of some of its would be saviors.

Written like a compelling detective story, but one for which he does not have an ending, the book is a must for anyone who lives in the region. They will be both weighted down and enlightened by reading it, and for you people from other regions, for example burgeoning cities in the NIC regions of Asia, you best read it now to get an idea of what is coming your way!

George Rand, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Architecture and Planning

Graduate School of Architecture

UCLA
Comment 18 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback
This book is a must read for anyone willing to expose themselves to the stories behind the stories of Los Angeles. The stories reveal the apathetic and self-centered nature of some Los Angeles citizens (who will never really admit they are from "Los Angeles"), and sets the stage for an entire change of mindset among Los Angelenos. This mindset is one that takes notice of the community, and the larger metropolis that communities make up. For a graduate city planning student as I, these stories help shape some basic values of mine regarding the nature of cities and communities. I strongly recommend this book.
Comment 12 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Hardcover
You and I aren't fools. We keep our eyes open. We follow the news. But the region where we live is so huge and complex. And changing so quickly. With short deadlines and tight budgets, most of what the media packages as "news" is not -- just old caricatures recycled with new names. Southern California is romanticized, demonized and satirized, because Southern California stereotypes make for great entertainment.

As amusement, this works. But half truths, myths and stereotypes make it virtually impossible to talk seriously about our region's future. Imagine trying to raise a child if all you had to go on was a video of the Hollywood movie, "Parenthood." The movie makes you laugh, it makes you cry. But it's useless for helping you figure out how to manage your family budget or what to do when your baby wakes up crying in the middle of the night.

That's our position as citizens, voters and taxpayers. Clueless. Not a problem -- if "Southern California" was just a soap opera. Or if we lived in a monarchy. But it's not and we don't.

Driving one rainy day from his home in Ventura County through "suburb after suburb, shopping center after shopping center and tract after tract," journalist and planner Bill Fulton began a journey of discovery that led him to write an extraordinary book called "The Reluctant Metropolis: The Politics of Urban Growth in Los Angeles." He calls it "an amalgamation of political science, history, sociology and urban planning" aimed at "telling good stories and ferreting out their meaning.
Read more ›
Comment 14 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Hardcover
Wow! William Fulton's look at the workings of Los Angeles government takes the reader on a trip through history to help discover how Los Angeles got to be how it is today. Many different case studies explore various elements of this "Reluctant" metropolis, such as the story of one particular block downtown, the fight with Las Vegas over water rights, how the urban transportation system came to be the way it is--and why it will never change, and how a college student singlehandedly and unintentionally changed the face of Ventura County politics forever. These are just a few of the fascinating tales William Fulton spins of Los Angeles. As a member of a Southern California transit advocacy group, I found the entire book hard to put down. After reading this well-written book, the reader should be more knowledgeable about the west's largest metropolis and how many elements come together to shape a region. I hope you enjoy this book with the same enthusiasm with which I did.
Comment 8 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse

Most Recent Customer Reviews

Set up an Amazon Giveaway

The Reluctant Metropolis: The Politics of Urban Growth in Los Angeles
Amazon Giveaway allows you to run promotional giveaways in order to create buzz, reward your audience, and attract new followers and customers. Learn more about Amazon Giveaway
This item: The Reluctant Metropolis: The Politics of Urban Growth in Los Angeles