Urban Transformations in the U.S.A.

Spaces, Communities, Representations

How did American cities change throughout the 20th and early 21st century? This timely publication integrates research from American Literary and Cultural Studies, Urban Studies and History. The essays range from negotiations of the »ethnic city« in US literature and media, to studies of recent urban phenomena and their representations: gentrification, re-appropriation and conversion of urban spaces in the USA.

These interdisciplinary and intercultural perspectives on American cities provide unique points of access for studying the complex narratives of urban transformation.

€39.99 *

2016-01-11, 426 pages
ISBN: 978-3-8376-3111-1

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Julia Sattler

Julia Sattler, TU Dortmund University, Germany

... with Julia Sattler

1. Why a book on this subject?

The American nation, internationally often perceived as quintessentially urban, has gone through numerous processes of urban transformations that have undeniably shaped its outlook and identity. American cities are attractive sites for immigrants, but they are also often perceived as sites of danger and crisis. Studying urban narratives and urban development itself from a cultural angle opens up new understandings of the potentials, but also the challenges, brought forward by urban transformations.

2. What relevance does this subject have in the current research debates?

Since the so-called Spatial Turn, the humanities have become much more interested in the relevance of space and spatial structures for these fields. In literary studies, for example, we have begun to study how spaces shape processes of storytelling and the other way around, and in how literature writes local specificity. In these terms, this volume is very timely: Urbanity, it seems, is talked about a lot these days – to the point where it can become quite overwhelming.

3. What new perspectives does your book open up?

The book focuses on the ways American cities are narrated and become accessible in different texts and medial forms – from the founding era until today. Since the main element uniting the essays is ›urban transformation›, the contributions comprehensively demonstrate how physical transformation impacts narrative change, and the other way around. We are hoping to make a valid argument about the role of storytelling in the construction and representation of American urbanities.

4. Who would you preferably like to discuss your book with?

I certainly hope this volume will cause a stir in the academic community, that it will be noticed by those studying American cities around the world! While I know that the primary audience will likely be students and researchers working in the humanities – in literary and cultural studies, in history, in media studies – I would very much love for it to be picked up by planners, by architects, or by sociologists. If the book contributes to a more extensive interdisciplinary dialogue, it will have made a significant contribution.

5. Your book in only one sentence:

This book is not only a collection of essays focusing on American cities and their manifold representations – it is a study of urban transformation as cultural narrative.

»The volume features different case studies and combines essays that both thematically and methodologically make for a very valuable and readable contribution to the field of urban studies.«
Nico Völker, KULT_online, 48 (2016)
Author(s)
Julia Sattler (ed.)
Book title
Urban Transformations in the U.S.A. Spaces, Communities, Representations
Publisher
transcript Verlag
Pages
426
Features
kart.
ISBN
978-3-8376-3111-1
DOI
Commodity Group
1725
BIC-Code
JFSG RGC
BISAC-Code
SOC026030 SOC015000
THEMA-Code
JBSD RGC
Release date
2016-01-11
Edition
1
Topics
Amerika, Stadt
Readership
American Studies, Cultural Studies, Urban Studies, Urban Planning, Architecture
Keywords/Tags
Cities, USA, Urban Studies, American Literature, American Culture, City, America, Social Geography, Cultural Geography, Sociology

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