Boardwalk of Dreams: Atlantic City and the Fate of Urban America / Edition 1

Boardwalk of Dreams: Atlantic City and the Fate of Urban America / Edition 1

5.0 1
by Bryant Simon
     
 

ISBN-10: 0195308093

ISBN-13: 9780195308099

Pub. Date: 04/27/2006

Publisher: Oxford University Press

"During the first half of the twentieth century, Atlantic City was the nation's most popular middle-class resort - the home of the famed Boardwalk, the Miss America Pageant, and the board game Monopoly. By the late 1960s, it had become a symbol of urban decay and blight, compared by journalists to bombed-out Dresden and war-torn Beirut. Several decades and a dozen…  See more details below

Overview

"During the first half of the twentieth century, Atlantic City was the nation's most popular middle-class resort - the home of the famed Boardwalk, the Miss America Pageant, and the board game Monopoly. By the late 1960s, it had become a symbol of urban decay and blight, compared by journalists to bombed-out Dresden and war-torn Beirut. Several decades and a dozen casinos later, Atlantic City is again one of America's most popular tourist spots, with thirty-five million visitors a year. Yet most stay for a mere six hours, and the highway has replaced the Boardwalk as the city's most important thoroughfare. Today the city doesn't have a single movie theater, and its one supermarket is a virtual fortress protected by metal detectors and security guards." "In this book, Bryant Simon does far more than tell a nostalgic tale of Atlantic City's rise, near death, and reincarnation. He turns the depiction of middle-class vacationers into a discussion of the boundaries of public space in urban America. In the past, he argues, the public was never really about democracy, but about exclusion. During Atlantic City's heyday, African Americans were kept off the Boardwalk and away from the beaches. The overly boisterous or improperly dressed were kept out of theaters and hotel lobbies by uniformed ushers and police. The creation of Atlantic City as the "Nation's Playground" was dependent on keeping undesirables out of view unless they were pushing tourists down the Boardwalk on rickshaw-like rolling chairs or shimmying in smoky nightclubs." "Desegregation overturned this racial balance in the mid-1960s, making the city's public spaces more open and democratic, too open and democratic for many middle-class Americans, who fled to suburbs and suburban-style resorts like Disneyworld. With the opening of the first casino in 1978, the urban balance once again shifted, creating twelve separate, heavily guarded, glittering casino worlds walled off from the dilapidated houses, boarded

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780195308099
Publisher:
Oxford University Press
Publication date:
04/27/2006
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
304
Sales rank:
769,024
Product dimensions:
9.20(w) x 6.10(h) x 0.80(d)

Table of Contents

1Staging Utopia on the boardwalk19
2The midway45
3Mapping Atlantic City63
4The last picture shows83
5Narrating decline and erasing race103
6Rebuilding the crowd132
7Life in the dying city153
8Disneyland and the devil's bargain171
9Casino publics194

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Boardwalk of Dreams: Atlantic City and the Fate of Urban America 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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