Category Archives: books

A cultural atlas of the Beat Generation

One of the most fascinating aspects of 20th Century United States cultural history was the development of the Beat Generation shortly after World War II.  While prominent for less than 20 years, the literary, musical, poetic, cultural, and philosophical icons … Continue reading

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“On The Road” observations from the King of the Beats

While reading the classic Jack Kerouac autobiographical novel, On The Road, I was struck by his interesting reflections about the various urban and natural landscapes he observed.  These were made while he was zooming back and forth across the nation’s … Continue reading

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When land use planning turns EVIL

As professional planners, we like to think of land use planning as a fairly benign occupation that may stir controversy and discourse every now and then. I doubt many of us would consider the profession as being evil. But, as … Continue reading

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Review of “Inventing Los Alamos” – Atomic utopia and urban paradox

I just had the pleasure of reading a most interesting book entitled, Inventing Los Alamos: The Growth of an Atomic Community by Jon Hunner.  Part historical account, part urban planning study, Inventing Los Alamos is a worthwhile read for anyone … Continue reading

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Best film of 2014…reconsidered

Upon further review after seeing a matinee showing of The Imitation Game this morning, I think this movie is the best of 2014. Originally, back in December, I felt Interstellar was tops, but have changed my mind. Benedict Cumberbatch and Keira Knightley are … Continue reading

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Can a remote uranium mining town become a retirement mecca?

While more of an academic publication than a great literary work of non-fiction, Boom Town Blues: Elliot Lake remains an enlightening and useful read. The book summarizes what can only be described as the “great experiment of Elliot Lake, Ontario.” Now, … Continue reading

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“Small, Gritty, and Green” just misses the mark

While quite an interesting read, the book Small, Gritty, and Green: The Promise of America’s Smaller Industrial Cities in a Low-Carbon World, by Catherine Tumber raised only a few new ideas to this urban planner. Perhaps that was because it … Continue reading

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