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Jane Jacobs lives in Toronto. (Publisher Provided) Author and community activist Jane Jacobs was born in Scranton, Pennsylvania on May 4, 1916. She spent two years at Columbia University in the School of General Studies. She was interrogated by the U.S. government over her loyality to the country on March 25, 1952 and was arrested during a demonstration against the Vietnam War on April 10, 1968. She also helped defeat a plan, proposed by the New York City park commissioner Robert Moses, to build an expressway through Washington Square in the early 1960s. She moved to Toronto in 1969 partially because of her objection to the Vietnam War. She became a Canadian citizen in 1974. Her most influential book, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, is a critique of 1950's urban renewal policies which, according to her, destroyed communities and created isolated, unnatural urban spaces. She received numerous honors including a lifetime achievement award from the National Building Foundation in 2000 and was appointed to the Order of Canada in 1996. In 1997, the Jane Jacobs prize was created by the City of Toronto at the Jane Jacobs: Ideas That Matter conference. She died on April 25, 2006 at the age of 89. (Bowker Author Biography)
— biography from The Death and Life of Great American Cities
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Short biography
Jane Jacobs, a journalist and writer, successfully led grassroots opposition to a massive urban renewal project in the 1950s and 1960s that would have destroyed several residential neighborhoods in lower Manhattan. She endured scorn from establishment figures because of her lack of formal training as an urban planner, and moved to Canada in 1968. There she continued her work and writing on urbanism, economies and social issues. Her most influential book was The Death and Life of Great American Cities, published in 1961.
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