Golden Gate: The Life and Times of America's Greatest Bridge

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Bloomsbury Publishing USA, Jul 15, 2010 - Architecture - 215 pages
11 Reviews

The Golden Gate Bridge links the urbanity of San Francisco with the wild headlands of Marin County, as if to suggest the paradox of California and America itself-the place that Fitzgerald saw as the last spot commensurate with the human capacity for wonder. The bridge, completed in 1937, also announced to the world America's engineering prowess and full assumption of its destined continental dominance. The Golden Gate is a counterpart to the Statue of Liberty, pronouncing American achievement in an unmistakable American fashion. The nation's very history is expressed in the bridge's art deco style and stark verticality.
Kevin Starr's Golden Gate is a brilliant and passionate telling of the history of the bridge, and the rich and peculiar history of the California experience. The Golden Gate is a grand public work, a symbol and a very real bridge, a magnet for both postcard photographs and suicides. In this compact but comprehensive narrative, Starr unfolds the hidden-in-plain-sight meaning of the Golden Gate, putting it in its place among classic works of art.

 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - williwhy - LibraryThing

Starr does his usual excellent job of placing this bridge into historic, geographic, and cultural contexts. The prose is often beautiful and engaging, but sometimes over-reaching and forced. The story ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - stevetempo - LibraryThing

Kevin Starr does an excellent job in framing this great American icon into a wonderful interdisciplinary context.. His descriptions, both detailed and poetic, serve to clearly convey a wonderful ... Read full review

Contents

Bridge
1
Icon
9
Site
18
Vision
33
Politics
56
Money
73
Design
83
Construction
109
City
137
Suicide
165
Art
176
Essay on Sources
197
Copyright

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About the author (2010)

Kevin Starr is one of America's most celebrated historians. His many books include a magisterial seven-volume history of California (Americans and the California Dream). He served as California State Librarian and in 2006 was awarded the National Humanities Medal. He currently teaches at the University of Southern California.

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