Story and Sustainability: Planning, Practice, and Possibility for American Cities

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Barbara J. Eckstein, James A. Throgmorton
MIT Press, 2003 - Political Science - 267 pages
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Story and Sustainability explores the role of story in planning theory and practice, with the goal of creating U.S. cities able to balance competing claims for economic growth, environmental health, and social justice. In the book, urban practitioners and scholars from fields as diverse as American studies, English, geography, history, planning, and criminal justice reflect critically on the traditional exclusionary power of storytelling and on its potential to facilitate the transformations of imagination, theory, and practice necessary to create sustainable, democratic American cities.The book begins with an editors' introduction identifying story, sustainable U.S. cities, and democracy as the three key themes. Part I advances and refines these concepts, connects them to contemporary U.S. urban planning, and provides tools that can be used when reading and interpreting the texts in part II. Part II exemplifies, amplifies, and modifies the key themes and arguments through the presentation of eight texts: theoretical and experiential, academic and nonacademic, expository and narrative, and familiar and unfamiliar. The combined focus on story and urban sustainability makes this book a unique contribution to planning literature.

 

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Contents

Stories in the Practice of Planning
13
Imagining Sustainable Places
39
Democracy Storytelling and the Sustainable City
65
The Old Neighborhood
85
The Story of an Evolving
113
Organizing Hope Negotiating Fear
143
In Search of a New Landfill Site
167
The Peninsula
193
Tales of a GeographerPlanner
207
The Meanest Streets
227
Notes
243
Index
261
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About the author (2003)

James A. Throgmorton is Associate Professor of Urban and Regional Planning at the University of Iowa.

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