11.949 | Spring 2004 | Graduate

City Visions: Past and Future


The calendar is divided into three parts:

  • Part I: Understanding Cities in Context: Local, National, and Global (Weeks 1 through 4)
  • Part II: Designing Cities In Local, National, and Global Context (Weeks 5 through 9)
  • Part III: City Design, Social Justice, and The Politics of Change (Weeks 10 through 14)

1 The City as a Social, Legal, and Political Concept Speaker: Gerald Frug, Harvard Law School

Readings on forms of Citizenship and Political Power as Product of the City-State Nexus

2 The Nature and Historical Origins of Cities Readings on Political, Social, and Economic Underpinnings of Urban Growth
3 The City as Nation (and vice-versa) Speaker: Larry Vale, MIT

Readings on Capital Cities as Seat and Symbol of National Identity

4 The City-Nation Nexus in Global Context Speaker: Neil Brenner, New York University

Readings on Cities, Capitalist Development, and State Formation in Global Context

5 Urban Utopias Speaker: David Harvey, CUNY Graduate Center, New York

Readings on Urban Utopias in Theory and Practice

6 Cities in National Consolidation and Global Expansion Speaker: Sumantra Bose, London School of Economics

Readings on the Design of Cities (Rome and Berlin) with National and Imperial Aims

7 Cities and Nationalism Speaker: Rogers Brubaker, UCLA and Central European University

Readings on the Relationships between Politics, Urban Life, and Physical Space

8 Rebuilding Nations by Reconstructing Cities Speaker: Jo Beall, London School of Economics

Readings on Cities (Berlin, Johannesburg, Mostar) Undertaking Urban and National Rebuilding in Post-Conflict Situations

9 Cities as Spaces for Democracy Speaker: Richard Sennett, London School of Economics

Readings on the Democratic Promise of the City and its Design

10 Cities and World Peace Readings on the Location and Design of the UN
11 Scales of Agency in a Global World: Individuals, Cities, Nations, and Beyond Speaker: Jonathan Glover, Kings College, London

Readings on the Various Scales and Locations of Identity and Power in a Globalizing world

12 Cities and Representation in a Global Age Speaker: Leslie Sklair, London School of Economics

Architectural, Social, and Spatial Correlates of a Post-national Geography

13 Considering Jerusalem Speaker: Bruce Mazlish, MIT

Student Presentations

Course Info

As Taught In
Spring 2004
Learning Resource Types
Lecture Videos
Written Assignments with Examples