(NEW EDITION) City of Quartz: Excavating the Future in Los Angeles

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(NEW EDITION) City of Quartz: Excavating the Future in Los Angeles

(NEW EDITION) City of Quartz: Excavating the Future in Los Angeles

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Why had I never put together the Lakewood Plan – allowing small areas to incorporate by contracting with the county for services and initially pay for them through sales rather than property tax, ensuring for years that many paid almost no or sometimes no property tax at all – and prop 13? He presents both the good and the bad about that city's evolution from agrarian eden to industrial polluter and finally commuter suburb in a calm, rational light. Davis makes a compelling case for why the city operates the way it does - or, rather, why the city in the 90's, at the height of its various tensions, operated as it did; the revised edition isn't much revised at all in that sense - but he's short on solutions. A city of loss as much as of dreams, Los Angeles was (I thought) best viewed from the windows of a departing 747.

Sydney, for example, provides close parallels, with its market-driven treatment of housing, in which developers and political forces join to plan new urban projects. I would later come to question all this, and to seek more subtle ways to understand the relationship between writing and political life. Whilst I was there I picked up a copy of City of Quartz, which had just come out, and read it all in one session.These included old and new investors, rival groups of local and state politicians, regional boosters, defenders of upper-middle-class neighbourhoods. Born in 1946, he has working-class origins and subsidized his studies by working as a meat-cutter and truck driver. Davis is a Marxist urban theorist, historian, and political commentator who, following the success of City of Quartz, has written monographs on other American cities, including San Diego and Las Vegas. We live in a rich society with poor children," Davis wrote in the 2006 preface of City of Quartz, "and that should be intolerable.

Central to Davis's project is getting his readers to view the spaces and geographies around them as products of intentional political decision-making, as evidence of metropolitan elites' corrupt priorities and material investment shoring up their profits through the police-backed maintenance of racial and economic segregation. Mike Davis is the author of several books including "Planet of Slums," "City of Quartz," "Ecology of Fear," "Late Victorian Holocausts," and "Magical Urbanism. To Mike Davis, the author of this fiercely elegant and wide- ranging work of social history, Los Angeles is both utopia and dystopia, a place where the last Joshua trees are being plowed under to make room for model communities in the desert, where the rich have hired their own police to fend off street gangs, as well as armed Beirut militias. Everything sleeps quietly in here - The toad keeping its watch on earth - The ogre eats those he meets - The knife waiting patiently for the child’ windpipe. The book’s critical insight is that in Los Angeles, land was the key resource – available, in seemingly endless quantities, for “commodification”.These are urban history themes of relevance not only to the whole of the United States, but also to Australia and other countries with a settler-colonial history. THE NEW SHAME OF PUNK TO COME "One Hundred asses to fuck and even more fuck heads to punch" is the only way I feel about this fucking story! The toad keeping its watch on earth - The ogre eats those he meets - The knife waiting patiently for the child’ windpipe.

The close connections between corporations and scientific institutions, the mad mix of religious nutters. A. Times), the differently conservative and sometimes Liberal and a bit more Jewish Westside, and now as part of the Pacific Rim, the rise of a third head in the form of potential new competition. He gives us a city of Dickensian extremes, Pynchonesque conspiracies, and a desperation straight out of Nathaniel West - a city in which we may glimpse our own future mirrored with terrifying clarity.It's quite well-done and very informative (at least to an ignoramus like me), but Davis goes overboard now and then in seeing a conspiracy to repress the poor behind everything. By the way, you've learned to stroke those odd dreams stolen from mirrors as you've learned to love the man you still loathed and that you hate even more now.

Here, the carceral state's function as a brutal enforcer of manufactured racial and classed hierarchies of difference in service of capital gains is made blaringly transparent. MTV… going back to a high school lifestyle after twenty… They would sell their life away only to do it but what they don't know, is that they've already done, spending it gulping down illusions the way bad weeds gulp down sour waters. Consequently, there is little hope professed in this book – whereas audiences normally look for hope. At the liberal arts college I attended in the later 1990s, we passed City of Quartz between friends, one of a handful of books you had to read. Though he was an almost exact contemporary of mine as an American historian, I never met Mike Davis, and I was not an avid early reader of City of Quartz.But, to the south and southeast, there stretched an immense grid of streets as far as the eye could see.

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