From Henry David Thoreau to Rachel Carson, writers have long examined the effects of industrialization and its potential to permanently alter the world around them. Today, as we experience rapid global urbanization, pressures on the natural environment to accommodate our daily needs for food, work, shelter, and recreation are greatly intensified. Concerted efforts to balance human use with ecological concerns are needed now more than ever.
A rich body of literature on the effect of human actions on the natural environment provides a window into what we now refer to as ecological design and planning. The study and practice of ecological design and planning provide a promising way to manage change in the landscape so that human actions are more in tune with natural processes. In The Ecological Design and Planning Reader Professor Ndubisi offers refreshing insights into key themes that shape the theory and practice of ecological design and planning. He has assembled, synthesized, and framed selected seminal published scholarly works in the field from the past one hundred and fifty years——ranging from Ebenezer Howard’s Garden Cities of To-morrow to Anne Whiston Spirn’s, “Ecological Urbanism: A Framework for the Design of Resilient Cities.” The reader ends with a hopeful look forward, which suggests an agenda for future research and analysis in ecological design and planning.
This is the first volume to bring together classic and contemporary writings on the history, evolution, theory, methods, and exemplary practice of ecological design and planning. The collection provides students, scholars, researchers, and practitioners with a solid foundation for understanding the relationship between human systems and our natural environment.
How China’s expansive new era of urbanization threatens to undermine the foundations of rural life
Since the beginning of the twenty-first century, China has vastly expanded its urbanization processes in an effort to reduce the inequalities between urban and rural areas. Centered on the mountainous region of Chongqing, which serves as an experimental site for the country’s new urban development policies, The End of the Village analyzes the radical expansion of urbanization and its consequences for China’s villagers. It reveals a fundamental rewriting of the nation’s social contract, as villages that once organized rural life and guaranteed rural livelihoods are replaced by an increasingly urbanized landscape dominated by state institutions.
Throughout this comprehensive study of China’s “urban–rural coordination” policy, Nick R. Smith traces the diminishing autonomy of the country’s rural populations and their subordination to larger urban networks and shared administrative structures. Outside Chongqing’s urban centers, competing forces are at work in reshaping the social, political, and spatial organization of its villages. While municipal planners and policy makers seek to extend state power structures beyond the boundaries of the city, village leaders and inhabitants try to maintain control over their communities’ uncertain futures through strategies such as collectivization, shareholding, real estate development, and migration.
As China seeks to rectify the development crises of previous decades through rapid urban growth, such drastic transformations threaten to displace existing ways of life for more than 600 million residents. Offering an unprecedented look at the country’s contentious shift in urban planning and policy, The End of the Village exposes the precarious future of rural life in China and suggests a critical reappraisal of how we think about urbanization.
Providing a lively snapshot of the state of art and social justice today on a global level, Entry Points accompanies the inaugural Vera List Center Prize for Art and Politics, launched at The New School on the occasion of the center’s twentieth anniversary. This book captures some of the most significant worldwide examples of art and social justice and introduces an interested audience of artists, policy makers, scholars, and writers to new ways of thinking about how justice is defined, advanced, and practiced through the arts. In so doing, it assembles some of the latest scholarship in this field while refining our vocabulary for speaking about social justice, social engagement, community enhancement, empowerment, and even art itself.
The book's first half contains three essays by Thomas Keenan, João Ribas, and Sharon Sliwinski that map the field of art and social justice. These essays are accompanied by more than twenty profiles of recent artist projects that consist of brief essays and artist pages. This curated and carefully considered map of artists and projects identifies key moments in art and social justice.
The book's second half consists of an in-depth analysis of Theaster Gates's The Dorchester Projects, which won the inaugural Vera List Prize for Art and Politics. Produced to complement the project’s exhibition at the Sheila C. Johnson Design Center, Parsons School of Design in September 2013, this analysis illuminates Gates's rich, complex, and exemplary work. This section includes an interview between Gates and Vera List Center director Carin Kuoni; essays by Horace D. Ballard Jr., Romi N. Crawford, Shannon Jackson, and Mabel O. Wilson; and a number of responses to The Dorchester Projects by faculty in departments across The New School.
Published by Duke University Press and the Vera List Center for Art and Politics at The New School
From the second half of the 1940s, when postwar reconstruction began in Italy, there were three notable driving forces of environmental change: the uncontrollable process of urban drift, fueled by considerable migratory flows from the countryside and southern regions toward the cities where large-scale productive activities were beginning to amass; unruly industrial development, which was tolerated since it was seen as the necessary tribute to be paid to progress and modernization; and mass consumption. In his fourth book, Federico Paolini presents a series of essays ranging from the uses of natural resources, to environmental problems caused by means of transport, to issues concerning environmental politics and the dynamics of the environment movement. Paolini concludes the book with a forecast about the environmental problems that will emerge in the public debate of the twenty-first century.
When she was only nine, Dayani Baldelomar left her Nicaraguan village with nothing more than a change of clothes. She was among tens of thousands of rural migrants to Managua in the 1980s and 1990s. After years of homelessness, Dayani landed in a shantytown called The Widows, squeezed between a drainage ditch and putrid Lake Managua. Her neighbor, Yadira Castellón, also migrated from the mountains. Driven by hope for a better future for their children, Dayani, Yadira, and their husbands invent jobs in Managua’s spreading markets and dumps, joining the planet’s burgeoning informal economy. But a swelling tide of family crises and environmental calamities threaten to break their toehold in the city.
Dayani’s and Yadira’s struggles reveal one of the world’s biggest challenges: by 2050, almost one-third of all people will likely live in slums without basic services, vulnerable to disasters caused by the convergence of climate change and breakneck urbanization. To tell their stories, Douglas Haynes followed Dayani’s and Yadira’s families for five years, learning firsthand how their lives in the city are a tightrope walk between new opportunities and chronic insecurity. Every Day We Live Is the Future is a gripping, unforgettable account of two women’s herculean efforts to persevere and educate their children. It sounds a powerful call for understanding the growing risks to new urbanites, how to help them prosper, and why their lives matter for us all.