How to Kill A City

How to Kill A City

Gentrification, Inequality, and the Fight for the Neighborhood

Book - 2017
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A journey to the front lines of the battle for the future of American cities, uncovering the massive, systemic forces behind gentrification--and the lives that are altered in the process.
The term gentrification has become a buzzword to describe the changes in urban neighborhoods across the country, but we don't realize just how threatening it is. It means more than the arrival of trendy shops, much-maligned hipsters, and expensive lattes. The very future of American cities as vibrant, equitable spaces hangs in the balance.

Peter Moskowitz's How to Kill a City takes readers from the kitchen tables of hurting families who can no longer afford their homes to the corporate boardrooms and political backrooms where destructive housing policies are devised. Along the way, Moskowitz uncovers the massive, systemic forces behind gentrification in New Orleans, Detroit, San Francisco, and New York. The deceptively simple question of who can and cannot afford to pay the rent goes to the heart of America's crises of race and inequality. In the fight for economic opportunity and racial justice, nothing could be more important than housing.

A vigorous, hard-hitting expose, How to Kill a City reveals who holds power in our cities-and how we can get it back

Publisher: New York : Nation Books, [2017]
Characteristics: vii, 258 pages : illustrations ; 25 cm
ISBN: 9781568585239 (hbk)
1568585233 (hbk)
Call Number: 307.3362 MOSKOWITZ


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Mar 01, 2018

this was interesting because it delivers bite sized pieces of what's happened/happening in New York, New Orleans, Detroit & San Francisco. Reading books on "Urban Sociology" at least let's me know that what's happening in the region I live in, is playing out all across our country. Rich "enclaves", gated communities, & people in glass towers its all happening. Understanding the how & why of it all along with what could be done interests me.

Aug 17, 2017

A readable, well-informed take on current housing trends.

Jun 13, 2017

A good journalistic survey of gentrification in four U.S. cities - San Francisco, Detroit, New York and New Orleans -- that integrates accessible summaries of a number of the best explanations of the forces driving it. It is particularly good in emphasizing the racial and class aspects of the dispossession taking place. Moskowitz is very sensitive to his own position in this. As a young gay man who has been gentrified out of his previous home, he is at the same time among the gentrifiers in that he has moved to Brooklyn and is participating in that process. His position and self-consciousness of these contradictions give the book a strong autobiographical aspect. At the same time, the book gives the reader a sense of the macro-economic forces driving the phenomenon. Moskowitz quotes Neil Smith who argues that gentrification is about "the reach of global capital down to the local neighborhood".


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