The Death And Life Of Great American Cities

by Jane Jacobs

Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group | December 1, 1992 | Trade Paperback

The Death And Life Of Great American Cities is rated 3.8 out of 5 by 5.
A direct and fundamentally optimistic indictment of the short-sightedness and intellectual arrogance that has characterized much of urban planning in this century, The Death and Life of Great American Cities has, since its first publication in 1961, become the standard against which all endeavors in that field are measured. In prose of outstanding immediacy, Jane Jacobs writes about what makes streets safe or unsafe; about what constitutes a neighborhood, and what function it serves within the larger organism of the city; about why some neighborhoods remain impoverished while others regenerate themselves. She writes about the salutary role of funeral parlors and tenement windows, the dangers of too much development money and too little diversity. Compassionate, bracingly indignant, and always keenly detailed, Jane Jacobs's monumental work provides an essential framework for assessing the vitality of all cities.

Format: Trade Paperback

Dimensions: 480 pages, 8 × 5.14 × 1 in

Published: December 1, 1992

Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 067974195X

ISBN - 13: 9780679741954

Found in: Urban

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Reviews

Rated 1 out of 5 by from A slog of a Read Yes, I realize that dearly departed Jane Jacobs is an urban planning icon, especially around the Toronto intelligentsia. Yes, I know that when this book came out it was a seminal publication on a topic little heard about. Problem is that her writing style is dry and long-winded making it hard even for an avid reader to keep churning those pages. Nevertheless, there are some foundations of good planning but the book is to focused on 1950's New York which will make it harder for Canadian readers to relate to. Best bet is to internet research Jacob's ideas within a few pages instead of this restrictive read.
Date published: 2007-10-24
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great for Urban Design/Architecture Students I'm a student of architecture, and I realize that many of the planning mistakes made by planners can easily stem from misunderstanding/inexperince on the part of architects. This book I have read and re-read, and I keep many of Mrs. Jacob's principles in mind as I work on projects for school and during my work terms. This is a vital resource book for anyone studying the modern city.
Date published: 2006-06-03
Rated 4 out of 5 by from The little and big things that matter Jane Jacobs has redefined urban planning with this impressively researched and thouroughly entertaining book. She holds a three pronged approach to urban development and life: 1) chaos, 2) paradox and 3) humour. Will interest the reader to aspects of planning such as width of sidewalks, number of streets, frequency of balconies and corner stores, social neighboorhood persona and characters, privacy, cross-use, coïncidence, and more, all related to economic development, safety, social welfare and neighboorhood liveliness. A must read book for anyone concerned with economic growth, urban issues and the environments we wish to live in.
Date published: 2000-09-21
Rated 4 out of 5 by from The little and big things that matter Jane Jacobs has redefined urban planning with this impressively researched and thouroughly entertaining book. She holds a three pronged approach to urban development and life: 1) chaos, 2) paradox and 3) humour. Will interest the reader to aspects of planning such as width of sidewalks, number of streets, frequency of balconies and corner stores, social neighboorhood persona and characters, privacy, cross-use, coïncidence, and more, all related to economic development, safety, social welfare and neighboorhood liveliness. A must read book for anyone concerned with economic growth, urban issues and the environments we wish to live in.
Date published: 2000-09-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A Fundamental Book This is one of the fundamental books on the successful strcuturing of large cities. The ideas proesented here about the principles that will gnerate a liviable settlement are applicable to settlements of all sizes. jacob shows how these principles can be met within the structure of large cities and how some of the convnetional designs of such cities hinder thme and create non-ideal living spaces. The book is excellent. Unfortunalely however its solutions have been seiezed upon by zealots who try to fit Jacob's solutions for large cities to settlements of every size. Jacobs' ideas and name are used constantly in discussions on city planning. It would be better if the people bandying her ideas about would read her books. They might be surprised to find that theirs and her ideas about the role of government in city planning may be quite dissimilar.
Date published: 1999-06-15

– More About This Product –

The Death And Life Of Great American Cities

by Jane Jacobs

Format: Trade Paperback

Dimensions: 480 pages, 8 × 5.14 × 1 in

Published: December 1, 1992

Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 067974195X

ISBN - 13: 9780679741954

About the Book

A direct and fundamentally optimistic indictment of the short-sightedness and intellectual arrogance that has characterized much of urban planning in this century, "The Death and Life of Great American Cities" has, since its first publication in 1961, become the standard against which all endeavors in that field are measured. In prose of outstanding immediacy, Jane Jacobs writes about what makes streets safe or unsafe; about what constitutes a neighborhood, and what function it serves within the larger organism of the city; about why some neighborhoods remain impoverished while others regenerate themselves. She writes about the salutary role of funeral parlors and tenement windows, the dangers of too much development money and too little diversity. Compassionate, bracingly indignant, and always keenly detailed, Jane Jacobs's monumental work provides an essential framework for assessing the vitality of all cities.

Read from the Book

Foreword to the Modern Library EditionWhen I began work on this book in 1958, I expected merely to describe the civilizing and enjoyable services that good city street life casually provides-and to deplore planning fads and architectural fashions that were expunging these necessities and charms instead of helping to strengthen them. Some of Part One of this book: that's all I intended. But learning and thinking about city streets and the trickiness of city parks launched me into an unexpected treasure hunt. I quickly found that the valuables in plain sight-streets and parks-were intimately mingled with clues and keys to other peculiarities of cities. Thus one discovery led to another, then another--.Some of the findings from the hunt fill the rest of this book. Others, as they turned up, have gone into four further books. Obviously, this book exerted an influence on me, and lured me into my subsequent life's work. But has it been influential otherwise? My own appraisal is yes and no. Some people prefer doing their workaday errands on foot, or feel they would like to if they lived in a place where they could. Other people prefer hopping into the car to do errands, or would like to if they had a car. In the old days, before automobiles, some people liked ordering up carriages or sedan chairs and many wished they could. But as we know from novels, biographies, and legends, some people whose social positions required them to ride-except for rural rambles-wistfully peered out at p
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From the Publisher

A direct and fundamentally optimistic indictment of the short-sightedness and intellectual arrogance that has characterized much of urban planning in this century, The Death and Life of Great American Cities has, since its first publication in 1961, become the standard against which all endeavors in that field are measured. In prose of outstanding immediacy, Jane Jacobs writes about what makes streets safe or unsafe; about what constitutes a neighborhood, and what function it serves within the larger organism of the city; about why some neighborhoods remain impoverished while others regenerate themselves. She writes about the salutary role of funeral parlors and tenement windows, the dangers of too much development money and too little diversity. Compassionate, bracingly indignant, and always keenly detailed, Jane Jacobs's monumental work provides an essential framework for assessing the vitality of all cities.

From the Jacket

A classic since its publication in 1961, this book is the defintive statement on American cities: what makes them safe, how they function, and why all too many official attempts at saving them have failed.

About the Author

Jane Jacobs was the legendary author of The Death and Life of Great American Cities, a work that has never gone out of print and that has transformed the disciplines of urban planning and city architecture. Her other major works include The Economy of Cities, Systems of Survival, The Nature of Economies and Dark Age Ahead. She died in 2006.

From Our Editors

A direct and fundamentally optimistic indictment of the shortsightedness and intellectual arrogance that has characterized much of urban planning in this century, The Death and Life of Great American Cities has, since its first publication in 1961, become the standard against which all endeavors in that field are measured.

Editorial Reviews

"The most refreshing, provacative, stimulating and exciting study of this [great problem] which I have seen. It fairly crackles with bright honesty and common sense."—Harrison Salisbury, The New York Times"One of the most remarkable books ever written about the city... a primary work. The research apparatus is not pretentious—it is the eye and the heart—but it has given us a magnificent study of what gives life and spirit to the city."—William H. Whyte, author of The Organization Man