Another City

Urban Life and Urban Spaces in the New American Republic

Dell Upton

View Inside Price: $55.00


September 2, 2008
416 pages, 7 x 10
144 b/w + 20 color illus.
ISBN: 9780300124880
Hardcover

An exploration of the beliefs, perceptions, and theories that shaped the architecture and organization of America’s earliest cities

In the late 18th and early 19th centuries, burgeoning American cities like New Orleans and Philadelphia seemed increasingly chaotic. Noise, odors, and a feverish level of activity on the streets threatened to overwhelm the senses. Growing populations placed new demands on every aspect of the urban landscape—streets, parks, schools, asylums, cemeteries, markets, waterfronts, and more. In this unique exploration of the early history of urban architecture and design, leading architectural historian Dell Upton reveals the fascinating confluence of sociological, cultural, and psychological factors that shaped American cities in the antebellum years.

Through contemporary travel accounts, diaries, and correspondence, as well as maps, architectural drawings, paintings, and prints—many previously unpublished--Upton investigates not only how buildings were designed, streets were laid out, and urban space was put to use, but also why. He offers original insights into the way cities were imagined, and an extensive selection of illustrations recreates the various features of the urban landscape in the nineteenth century.

Dell Upton is professor of art history at UCLA. His books include Holy Things and Profane: Anglican Parish Churches in Colonial Virginia, published by Yale University Press and winner of the Alice Davis Hitchcock Book Award, the John Hope Franklin Publication Prize, and the Abbott Lowell Cummings Award, and Architecture in the United States.

"An original and magesterial work of scholarship. . . . A stunning re-presentation of the antebellum city."--Mary Ryan, Johns Hopkins University

"This is a tour-de-force of urban and architectural history, producing an indelible picture of American cities that is both immediate and analytical. This truly innovative work of historical scholarship forces us to rethink the relationships between the individual, society, and the city."—Margaret Crawford, Harvard University

“A work of extraordinary scholarship and imagination, Another City lays bare the workings of the nineteenth century American city in a strikingly original fashion. No one knows more about the way the ordinary residents of Philadelphia and New Orleans lived their lives than Dell Upton, and no one tells it better. This is a splendid book.”—Shane White, University of Sydney

Upton’s deft consideration of the physical urban landscape and the lived experiential urban space truly offers a new sort of intellectual history of architecture, one grounded in historical specificity but with broad applications for how we interpret the built environment.”—Edward S. Cooke, Jr., Yale University

"Richly illustrated, elegantly written book. . . . Upton has produced an ambitious book that at once brings the pre-Civil War city into vivid focus and at the same time recasts our understanding of the relationship between urban form and ideals of selfhood, citizenship, and republicanism in the antebellum city. . . . Another City is a magnificent work of urban, architectural, and cultural history.  Upton intricately weaves together a wide variety of sources—including diaries, maps, architectural plans, lithographs and engravings, photographs, and municipal ordinances—to examine the richness of the urban fabric in antebellum America. . . . This is a superb book that will be of enormous interest to students and scholars of architecture, urbanism, politics, and American culture more broadly." —Robin F. Bachin, Harvard Design Magazine

"This is a marvelous book—imaginative, engaging, and deeply researched.  Another City not only brings the antebellum American city to life with bold immediacy and thoughtful analysis, but its author's original approach also forces us to reconsider the many ways in which individuals relate to their urban environments." —Gabrielle M. Lanier, Common-Place

"Virtually all of the topics, which use the interplay between people and the objects they live among, are excellent and very helpful to anyone interested in the physical city.  A very useful book." —I. Cohen, Choice

"One of the most innovative and fascinating aspects of this 'intellectual history of architecture' is the attention Upton provides to the visceral and sensory aspects of urban life. . . . The signts, sounds, and smells of the early republican city come to life. . . . Insightful, rich, and surprisingly entertaining."--Mona Domosh, Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians

"Upton's lively prose—grounded solidly in historical scholarship based on contemporary diaries, correspondence, maps, political cartoons, and prints—evokes vivid place memories and stirs the reader's imagination about the possibilities for reinvigorating urban life in a democratic metropolitan region."—June Williamson, Buildings & Landscapes

“[A] masterful examination of the sights, sounds, and smells of antebellum urbanism.”—Buildings and Landscapes

Winner of the 2011 Spiro Kostof Award given by the Society of Architectural Historians
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