Writing the City: Literature and the Urban Experience

Writing the City: Literature and the Urban Experience

by Peter Preston, Paul Simpson-Housley
     
 

'The expression of human experience it embodies ... includes all personal history'.
Saul Bellow's view of the city is far from that of classic geographical descriptions which look at growth or decline, demographic patterns, traffic flows and economic potential: these empirically conceived models of urban geography fail to accommodate the crucial

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Overview

'The expression of human experience it embodies ... includes all personal history'.
Saul Bellow's view of the city is far from that of classic geographical descriptions which look at growth or decline, demographic patterns, traffic flows and economic potential: these empirically conceived models of urban geography fail to accommodate the crucial human aspect of city life.
Located at the interface of geography and literature, Writing the City visualizes the city through the hopes, aspirations, disappointments and pains of international novelists and creative writers. From Manchester, Montreal and Sydney to Osaka, Varanasi amd Odessa, cities become more than their built environment, more than a set of class or economic relationships: they are also an experience to be lived, suffered and undergone.
Thus cities are seen in terms of the innocence of an Eden now lost, a threat of sinful Babylon and the promise of a New Jerusalem.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780415106672
Publisher:
Taylor & Francis
Publication date:
10/28/1994
Pages:
368
Product dimensions:
6.20(w) x 9.20(h) x 1.20(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

Meet the Author

Table of Contents

List of maps and figures
Notes on contributors
Acknowledgements
1Introduction: Writing the City1
2Belfast: Bernard Mac Laverty's Heart of Darkness17
3Manchester and Milton-Northern: Elizabeth Gaskell and the Industrial Town31
4Contrasting the Nature of the Written City: Helsinki in Regionalistic Thought and as a Dwelling-Place59
5The St. Petersburg of Oblomov and Crime and Punishment81
6City-Icon in a Poetic Geography: Pushkin's Odessa95
7Very Different Montreals: Pathways through the City and Ethnicity in Novels by Authors of Different Origins109
8City Primeval: High Noon in Elmore Leonard's Detroit125
9Willa Cather as a City Novelist149
10A Place of Tombs: The Charleston of William Gilmore Simms173
11Jerusalem in S. Y. Agnon's Yesterday Before Yesterday195
12Modern Varanasi: Place and Society in Shivprasad Singh's Street Turns Yonder221
13Chikamatsu's Osaka243
14Gazing on Apartheid: Post-Colonial Travel Narratives of the Golden City257
15Tinsel Town: Sydney as Seen through the Eyes of Christina Stead287
16Transgressing Boundaries: Isabel Allende's Santiago De Chile307
17Eden, Babylon, New Jerusalem: A Taxonomy for Writing the City331
Index342

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