Lkboehm's Blog

Urban History Blog

Can Cities Sustain Large Arenas and Other Development? May 17, 2011

Filed under: Uncategorized — lkboehm @ 12:44 pm

A major theme of late 20th century urban studies involves the failure of the CDB (central business district) of American cities.  In his work, Rough Road to Renaissance: Urban Revitalization in America 1940-1985, Jon Teaford explores this theme in a way that works wonderfully in college classrooms.  This book is excerpted in the American Urban Reader in the selection entitled “Messiah Mayors and the Gospel of Urban Hype” starting on page 229.  The New York Times article below pairs beautifully with this selection.  In the article, western towns’ experiments with urban development, especially large arenas, are detailed.

In the slumping economy, and with our growing tendency toward couch-potatoness (why leave the house to see  a live show when we have Netflix, movies on demand, video games, mog, and other services available right through the remote control?) venues for live entertainment are not fairing well in many of our cities.


The Nannies May 10, 2011

Filed under: Uncategorized — lkboehm @ 1:19 am

This article describes the immense divide between domestic workers in NYC and their wealthy employers. The largely immigrant employees, often have poor working conditions, no benefits and are so scattered throughout the city that there is no one to organize and look out for their wellbeing. This article describes Domestic Workers United, a union organization for domestic workers and how its creator, Ai-jen Poo, has helped recently helped to raise public awareness of the issue and challenge others to follow in her footsteps.