345-102-MQ, Culture of Cities
Where people live is sometimes a matter of choice and sometimes a matter of necessity, but where we live has a tremendous impact on our everyday lives. This course will focus on the places we call home. While the urban landscape can be described in terms of its physical characteristics, it can also be discussed in terms of its distinct social characteristics. Students will explore the physical and social spaces of the city and its suburbs as a reflection or manifestation of particular worldviews. Popular ideas of the inner city often associate it with diversity and progressive attitudes, while the suburbs are linked with homogeneous populations and conservative politics. From a historical perspective, the city has been viewed as the bastion of chaos and social ills, while the suburbs have been associated with ideas of control and social order. Yet, pre-war suburbs were actually quite ethnically diverse, individualistic and politically alternative. This course will examine the nature of life in these urban landscapes and how the worldviews associated with these spaces have shifted from pre-war to post-war to the present day.