By Lloyd Rodwin, Robert M. Hollister
Curious concerning the photos of town which have been evolving within the diversified social sciences, we did what lecturers usually do in this type of situa 1 tion: we organize a seminar on "Images of town within the Social Sciences." From the beginning, we counted at the support of experts in different fields to pursue their pursuits. Of the individuals who agreed to take part, all yet got here from the us, and their analyses, typically, replicate the event of Western international locations and the U.S.. In our formal directions to our collaborators, we took fi>r granted number of photos of town can be discovered or inferred of their fields of craftsmanship. We requested them to spot those photographs and their services, to give an explanation for how and why they've got replaced through the years, and to narrate those photos to the particular highbrow traditions and techniques-analytical or otherwise-in their respective fields. The definition of snapshot was once left to the judgment of the participants.
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Extra resources for Cities of the Mind: Images and Themes of the City in the Social Sciences
Bankruptcies and mass unemployment and takeover were the order of the day. " In both cases, the city is a kind of cartoon of the major phenomena of the decade: endlessly spreading suburbia, linked by great rivers of freeway traffic, for the first; dying cities, contrasted with multinational headquarter-control megalopolises, for the second. In both, geographers brought to their task philosophical assumptions that were curiously wellsuited to their subject matter: the primacy of rationalism and the individual pursuit of enlightened self-interest in the first, the primacy of uncontrollable forces and the helplessness of individual persons or groups of workers or cities in the second.
12The 46 JOHN R. HARRIS that cities continue to grow despite increased land costs, congestion, and the like must be explained by some compensating advantages, and in the absence of direct identification of these factors, the name agglomeration economies has been given as a substitute for specific knowledge. In trying to explain agglomeration economies, economists have waved their hands at the exploitation of economies of scale within firms, at the presence of specialized labor pools, at the possibilities of further specialization and exchange, at scale economies in infrastructure and services, and at ready access to common pools of information.
Seizing their l7Stewart, "Empirical Yfathematical Rules concerning the Distribution and Equilibrium of Population," Geographical Review 37 (1947): 461-485; Zipf, Human Behavior and the Principle of Least Effort (New York: Hafner, 1949). tSB. R. Yfitchell and C. Rapkin, Urban Traffic, A Function of Land Use (New York: Columbia University Press, 1954). 28 PETER HALL new theoretical and technical tools with enthusiasm, geographers sought for underlying order in urban behavior. Rational urbanites, in pursuit of pure economic objectives, whether as producers or consumers, were confronted with the "friction of distance" in geographical space (a term coined many years before by the pioneer American urban economist Robert Murray Haig 19).
Cities of the Mind: Images and Themes of the City in the Social Sciences by Lloyd Rodwin, Robert M. Hollister