By Lewis Mumford
A visionary survey of urbanism from the center a while to the overdue Thirties, with a brand new creation by means of Thomas Fisher
thought of one of the maximum works of Lewis Mumford—a prolific historian, sociologist, thinker of expertise, and longtime structure critic for the New Yorker—The tradition of Cities is a decision for communal motion to “rebuild the city global on a sounder human foundation.” First released in 1938, this radical research into the human setting relies on firsthand surveys of North American and ecu locales, in addition to huge old and technological study. Mumford takes readers from the compact, worker-friendly streets of medieval hamlets to the symmetrical neoclassical avenues of Renaissance towns. He reports the squalor of nineteenth-century manufacturing facility cities and speculates at the destiny of the booming twentieth-century Megalopolis—whose very unlikely scale, Mumford believes, can purely result in its cave in right into a “Nekropolis,” a monstrosity of residing death.
A civic visionary, Mumford is credited with the various earliest proposals for ecological city making plans and the right use of know-how to create balanced dwelling environments. within the ultimate chapters of The tradition of Cities, he outlines attainable paths towards utopian destiny towns which may be freed from the stressors of the Megalopolis, in sync with the rhythms of way of life, powered by way of fresh power, built-in with agricultural areas, and whole of sincere and cozy housing for the operating type. the foundations set forth via those visions, as soon as utilized to Nazi-occupied Europe’s razed towns, are nonetheless proper this present day as technological advances and overpopulation switch the character of city life.
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Extra resources for The Culture of Cities
13). Here a figure is dressed in a serpent headdress, which in turn is surmounted by an elaborate feather headdress containing two burning torches (von Winning 1979). The figure holds another pair of burning torches, while below are numerous Classic Veracruz scroll forms of the type Stark (1998, 1999:148–149, 2001:339) has associated specifically with the south-central Gulf lowlands. In sum, the imagery of the Feathered Serpent Pyramid at Teotihuacan shares certain fundamental characteristics with what is identified here as the iconography of Feathered Serpents and mirrors in Classic Veracruz generally and in Tajín’s Structure 4 Panel particularly.
AD 350–600) (drawing by the author); b, Classic Veracruz panel resembling Cacahuatal phase works from Tajín region, Museo de Antropología de Xalapa (drawing by Daniela Koontz, courtesy Museo de Antropología de Xalapa). Teotihuacan and the Classic Veracruz panel, but clearly a derivative motif, with a blade emerging from the open maw. As Stone (1989:158) notes, this mirror and blade-tongued serpent motif can be traced back to Early Classic Maya imagery, which would make it roughly contemporary with the Classic Veracruz stela and the Teotihuacan imagery.
AD 100; Daneels 1997), but no other Gulf lowlands center yet studied has such a large concentration. Few Mesoamerican cities anywhere had as many ballcourts: to date only Cantona (twenty-four courts) and Chichén Itzá (thirteen) can claim more during this period (Taladoire 2001:114). Several of the Tajín ballcourts include stone sculpture with a complex iconography that contains clues to the courts’ function and meaning. The subject of this chapter is the meaning encoded in the most prominent and elaborately decorated ballcourt, and what that may tell us about its function.
The Culture of Cities by Lewis Mumford