Sociological Analysis Of Jane Jacobs

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A city in its simplest definition is the life-center of a particular town or geographic location whose demarcation is generally outlined by quiet suburbs. It is the core of economic, industrial, social and technological operation. Cities generally boasts significant historical importance, which helps in assuring its permanency. A city serves as a “one-stop shop” and is the melting pot for converging cultures and businesses. In short, a city is the mecca for modernization, economic exploits and the gateway to diversity.

When I consider the definition of a city, I cannot help but think of the sociological attributes of a city as well as its physicality. A city is both an idea and a physical location. The general consensus from a sociological
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In today’s society, many people are undoubtedly highly apprehensive of traveling to certain cities or being caught in particular areas of certain cities outside high traffic period. Jacob stresses the importance of streets and basically its attractiveness. She alludes to the fact that streets and sidewalks on their own are nothing but abstraction and so are buildings within a city (107). Jane further writes that “if a city’s streets look interesting, the city looks interesting; if they look dull, the city looks dull” (page 107). If cities appear interesting, it is only fair to assume it will attract people. I cannot agree more. For example, in the impoverished neighborhoods of the city of Philadelphia, most people at first glance of the streets, the abundance of graffiti and even the murals would not be caught dead in the city in broad daylight, worse at certain times of the night. For many, these expressions of art are viewed simply as the works of hoodlums who vandalize their surroundings essentially rendering the city a “ghetto” and sending a message of violence and fear. In contrast, one stroll in center city on Market street lined with shops, hotels, museums, bars, eateries and a multitude of businesses looks attractive, therefore inviting many…show more content…
I agree that cities are in some ways a violation of public spaces and that they create and encourage segregation. Look at University City for instance, the area predominantly surrounding Drexel University. This area was once home to native Philadelphians who due to economic gain for the city government and the university, basically drove them out. Rent skyrocketed to a point where most of these regular folks cannot even afford it. Look at image 11. These people are in some ways barred from the city with the university privatizing certain public areas. Places where people use to frequent no longer exist and can only be revisited through memory. Some would argue that the economic development and Drexel’s expansion is good for the area and certainly outweigh the negative impact or whatever Philadelphians lost, nevertheless, Davis’ points ring true to this example. It is almost comparable to the U.S. fighting wars overseas and setting up camp on foreign soil restricting access to locals. Until fairly recently undertaken by the Dornsife center, there was little to no interaction between the university and the area in which it operates. Tensions rang high between the people and this monstrous institution that bulldozed what they knew as home. Now their streets are filled with college kids and an overdose of vehicular traffic. The city has virtually evolved into something that is now culturally unrecognizable to

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