Sunday, August 24, 2014

Florilegium urbanum

townMedieval English urban history - Introduction

The vast majority of the primary sources that bear witness to medieval English towns and the lives of the men and women who resided in them each focus on some particular aspect or event. General descriptions of any individual towns are rare, as are surveys or reviews of English towns generally. We do possess a few examples of these, however, and several are given here. Two happen to be roughly contemporary with each other, from the period when we are just beginning to see boroughs emerging as distinctive entities in the social and economic fabric. Furthermore, they present contrasting viewpoints on urban society: one pro, one con. The third comes at the close of the Middle Ages, while the fourth is a century later yet looks back at a city as it was in the medieval period. A fifth document (actually the fourth in the sequence below) is not in the same mould, but has been included for the light it throws upon key characteristics of towns in medieval England.

Most of the medieval texts presented in the Florilegium Urbanum almost inevitably date from the thirteenth to fifteenth centuries – the final third of what is conventionally considered the European Middle Ages. This is due to a dearth of surviving written documentation produced by urban sources in earlier periods.

Saturday, July 12, 2014

.@airplanereader on writing about place

…saturated with memories, associations, tracks and traces, more layers than a medieval palimpsest, unstable boundaries…I took pains excavating those layers in Little Dorrit (dss chapter) but don't manage so well writing about my own personal places, falling back on images, links to the efforts of others…this blog…

It's impossible to write about place.
I was chatting with my friend Ian the other day and he mentioned in passing, "writing is impossible." We had been talking about how hard it really is to write clear coherent prose. It is. Difficult, I mean. Just try following your thoughts and sensations for five minutes, and putting them into neat prose.
Then you add a topic, or god forbid a 'theme', and it gets harder still. Focus, attention, word by word, sentence to paragraph. Logical propositions. What was I talking about again?

It's impossible to write about place.
 Read the rest at What is literature?: Writing about place

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

the view from Latin America

 A new issue of Critical Reviews of Latin American Research is out. Jose H. Bortoluci and Robert S. Jansen (Michigan): "Toward a Postcolonial Sociology: The View From Latin America." Erin Graff Zivin (USC): "Beyond Inquisitional Logic, or, Toward an An-archaeological Latin Americanism."

Matiias Bargsted, Juan Carlos Castillo, and Nicolas M. Somma (UC-CL): "Political Trust in Latin America." Naomi Roht-Arriaza (Hastings): "After Amnesties Are Gone: Latin American National Courts and the New Contours of the Fight Against Impunity." Roberto Laver (Harvard): "Judicial Independence in Latin America and the (Conflicting) Influence of Cultural Norms."

Juan Cristaldo and Lorena Silvero (UNA): "Maps of Our Shared Territory." Tanya Golash-Boza (UC-Merced) and Eduardo Bonilla-Silva (Duke):"Rethinking Race, Racism, Identity and Ideology in Latin America." From the International Journal of Multicultural Education, a special issue on Globalization and Educational Equity in Latin America

and much more at the view from latin america - / omnivore

Monday, April 7, 2014

#Urban Sprawl: Get Fat, Stay Poor…Die In Car Crashes

…or enervated by the monotony of boring repetition…death by simulacra? But what about inner city poverty, food deserts, or is this vision meant primarily for the upwardly mobile and ambitious?

❝That urban design improves the quality of people’s lives is an old idea. A new study, Measuring Sprawl 2014, now finds that people who live in densely populated regions benefit in many ways. In brief, they have greater economic mobility, they're healthier, and they live longer❞

Urban Sprawl: Get Fat, Stay Poor, And Die In Car Crashes | Co.Design | business design

Sunday, January 19, 2014

#city & other getaways

…#CityMOOC fodder from the mbx works on multiple levels: place, city, even #rhizo14although that could take some 'splainin to connect. Pinterest's label,"ideas for a long weekend getaway" is not even on the list since I hardly ever "get away" unless I can do virtually -- and that is just about every day, 

Rhizomatic connects here because a) it describes my social media network explorations, b) the interests they connect, and c) may (as Michael Melcher said about the metaphor) be another, better organizing metaphor for both networks and cities. Searching "rhizome +city" turns up intriguing results like the Urban Rhizome or the Rhizome Collective -- others too. Going on 15 years after, and I'm still collecting spatial metaphors to "organize" (ha!) and imagine/visualize cityspace: rhizome joins — consolidates — palimpsest and labyrinth, but counters quincunx (perhaps as anti- or un- in a Greimas schematic)

City escape boards to follow

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

In LaPlace LA 203 years ago today

…among other things not taught in 8th grade Louisiana history back in the 50s

Revolt…The largest slave revolt in United States history occurred on this date 203 years ago. The uprising started in what is now LaPlace in St. John the Baptist Parish in 1811 and rolled eastward, with a goal of reaching New Orleans and possibly banding with other rebels to take the city.

Read the rest of The largest slave revolt in U.S. history occurred this day 203 years ago. It started in LaPlace

Art by renowned River Parishes artist Lorraine Gendron depicts the largest slave revolt in United States history. It started in LaPlace and rolled east toward New Orleans before being crushed in Kenner.