Slow Burn City: London in the Twenty-First Century

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9781447270201: Slow Burn City: London in the Twenty-First Century

London has become the global city above all others. Money from all over the world flows through it; its land and homes are tradable commodities; it is a nexus for the world's migrant populations, rich and poor. Versions of what is happening in London are happening elsewhere, but London has become the best place to understand the way the world's cities are changing. Some of the transformations London has undergone were creative, others were destructive; this is not new. London has always been a city of trade, exploitation, and opportunity. But London has an equal history of public interventions, including the Clean Air Act, the invention of the green belt and council housing, and the innovation of the sewers and embankments that removed the threat of cholera. In each case the response was creative and unprecedented; they were also huge in scale and often controversial. The city must change, of course, but Moore explains why it should do so with a "slow burn," through the interplay of private investment, public good, and legislative action. Fiercely intelligent, thought-provoking, lucidly written, and often outrageously and uncomfortably funny, Slow Burn City is packed with fascinating stories about the physical fabric of London in the 21st century. But by seeing this fabric as the theater of social and cultural struggles, Moore connects the political and architectural decisions of London's enfeebled and reactive government with the built environment that affects its inhabitants' everyday lives. In this urgent and necessary book, Moore makes a passionate case for London to invent new ways to respond to the pressures of the present, from which other cities could learn.

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About the Author:

Rowan Moore is the architecture critic for the Observer and previously for the Evening Standard. He is also a trained architect, and between 2002 and 2008 was the Director of the Architecture Foundation. He is the author of Why We Build.

Review:

Moore knows London better than most. There is a great argument in this book - and an important one Sunday Times Rowan Moore's Slow Burn City: London in the Twenty-First Century is an architectural study in the noble tradition of Ian Nairn: a vivid, knowledgable, argumentative tour of a city changing perhaps faster than at any time in its history David Kynaston, Observer A political book in the best sense - helping us to imagine a better world, reminding us that ideas shape how we live and plotting a better future for London. It's also full of intriguing facts, always beautifully written and adventurously illustrated. Rowan Moore should be Mayor -- Alain De Botton Offers a tour of our streets that will make you look at London in a new light ... Moore's book is impressive for what he is saying, and the way he says it ... He gives the reader a new understanding of our metropolis Camden New Journal Moore can't be bettered ... brilliant Country Life Fun to read, packed with entertaining asides and spiced with waspish invective ... Oldie Review of Books Each chapter of Rowan Moore's book is a striking architectural set piece ... Moore writes persuasively on public spaces and the increasing, troubling tendency to keep the public out of them ... [he] is at his best examininig why certain public spaces have worked, why we flock to them and find them congenial and welcoming ... [his] portraits of individual buildings have great verve Times Literary Supplement Devastatingly funny if deeply disturbing ... No other newspaper architecture critic [is] as sharp an assessor of the built environment as Moore New York Review of Books An eloquent, sweeping history-cum polemic Literary Review One of the UK's most accomplished writers on the profession, he critiques the most important buildings and the people who masterminded them with a style that is both entertaining and cuts through the crap Observer A subtle, often eccentric but always entertaining guide Literary Review Moore decrypts the ideological narratives of buildings with the same fluency he brings to bear on materials, forms and spaces: today's architectural criticism rarely seems so humane or intelligent Daily Telegraph Moore has a lot to offer those who like verbal flexibility and thought-provoking aphorisms. There is also a sense of mischief ... if famous architects were a coconut shy, Moore would go home with the giant teddy Sunday Telegraph Moore writes with economy, clarity and wit -- Will Wiles Building Design

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Book Description Pan MacMillan, United Kingdom, 2017. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Main Market Ed. Language: English . Brand New Book. With a new introduction for the paperback.London is a supreme achievement of civilization. It offers fulfilments of body and soul, encourages discovery and invention. It is a place of freedom, multiplicity and co-existence. It is a Liberal city, which means it stands for values now in peril. London has also become its own worst enemy, testing to destruction the idea that the free market alone can build a city, a fantastical wealth machine that denies too many of its citizens a decent home or living. In this thought-provoking, fearless, funny and subversive book, Rowan Moore shows how London s strength depends on the creative and mutual interplay of three forces: people, business and state. To find responses to the challenges of the twenty-first century, London must rediscover its genius for popular action and bold public intervention. The global city above all others, London is the best place to understand the way the world s cities are changing. It could also be, in the shape of a living, churning city of more than eight million people, the most powerful counter-argument to the extremist politics of the present. Bookseller Inventory # AA79781447270201

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Book Description Pan MacMillan, United Kingdom, 2017. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Main Market Ed.. Language: English . Brand New Book. With a new introduction for the paperback. London is a supreme achievement of civilization. It offers fulfilments of body and soul, encourages discovery and invention. It is a place of freedom, multiplicity and co-existence. It is a Liberal city, which means it stands for values now in peril. London has also become its own worst enemy, testing to destruction the idea that the free market alone can build a city, a fantastical wealth machine that denies too many of its citizens a decent home or living. In this thought-provoking, fearless, funny and subversive book, Rowan Moore shows how London s strength depends on the creative and mutual interplay of three forces: people, business and state. To find responses to the challenges of the twenty-first century, London must rediscover its genius for popular action and bold public intervention. The global city above all others, London is the best place to understand the way the world s cities are changing. It could also be, in the shape of a living, churning city of more than eight million people, the most powerful counter-argument to the extremist politics of the present. Bookseller Inventory # AA79781447270201

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