Philadelphia: An American Paris

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9780940159716: Philadelphia: An American Paris
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Author and photographer Joseph L. Borkson offers a new look at the city of Philadelphia, one virtually ignored by historians, guidebooks, and even the city's residents. Certainly, Philadelphia is to be hailed as the founding place of American liberty, and as the site of some of the biggest celebrations of American freedom and culture that our nation has held. But Borkson argues that a French influence has cast its aura over them all: from the Enlightenment that inspired the American revolutionaries and the financial and military support from France that allowed them to sustain their endeavors, to the impact of French art and architecture in the development and construction of much of this American city, to the cultural touches that pervade the dining, shopping, and lodging establishments of Philadelphia.

The City of Brotherly Love has long been inspired and influenced by the City of Light, and the words and photographs in this book will surprise and delight readers as they illuminate the special relationship that Philadelphia and Paris enjoy.

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About the Author:

JOSEPH L. BORKSON is a physician who practices and resides in Philadelphia. He has made numerous trips to Paris.

From Library Journal:

Borkson, a physician from Philadelphia, takes a look at his hometown as a city with a large and lasting French influence on its architecture and design. He argues that it all goes back to the Founding Fathers and the influence of the Enlightenment and continues to the present with influences on the cuisine. The Parkway, with its art museum at one end, bears obvious comparison with the Champs-Elys‚es, and Fairmount Park, the largest city park in America, recalls many parks in Paris. Also included are photographs of several private homes, which further reveal the French influence. Some architectural history is included to bring out the main points, but the real charm of the book lies in the lavish color photography scattered throughout. A minor drawback is that while most comparisons are apt and convincing, some seem far-fetched. For example, Borkson refers to Founders' Hall of Girard College, which is a Greek Revival building, as an example of the Empire style. Also, a glossary of architectural terms would have been useful. Recommended for public libraries. George M. Jenks, Bucknell Univ., Lewisburg, PA
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

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