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Concrete Reveries: Consciousness and the…

Concrete Reveries: Consciousness and the City

by Mark Kingwell

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732254,009 (3.21)None
"How do cities shape us and how do we shape them? That is the subject of Concrete Reveries, Mark Kingwell's playful and lyrical look at how we occupy city space and why place is so important to who we are. As he walks through various urban landscapes, Kingwell explores the sights, smells, and forms of the city, reflecting on how they mold our notions of identity, the limits of social and political engagement, and our moral obligations as citizens."--Jacket.… (more)



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Between Space and Place

I really enjoyed reading "Concrete Reveries" -- to me the book felt like a series of landscape essays describing the evolution of spaces into places. Kingwell is a very philosophical writer and so we really get a the meta-knowledge of why cities are the way they are.

As Kingwell himself states, the book is not a blueprint for an ideal city, it is not a polemic of Le Corbusier, nor is it an extension of Jane Jacobs, it is an exploration into what makes a city a city, what makes New York New York, what makes Shanghai Shanghai.

Though I found the book highly readable, I think the philosophical density may appear daunting to the average reader -- Kingwell is heavy into Heidegger, Descartes, and Freud. I highly recommend "Concrete Reveries" for anyone studying urban planning or modern architecture. ( )
  bruchu | May 26, 2009 |
p 46 favorite quote so far: "Solvitur ambulando, medieval monks liked to say: it is solved by walking."
  superpatron | Nov 8, 2008 |
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