spatial segregation, maps

academica, cities

I think I’ve said this somewhere before, but when I saw John Edwards speak at Hunter College two years ago, I was very impressed with how he had developed his ‘Two Americas‘ meme into a story about spatial segregation. Perhaps I’m jaded, but it was refreshing to hear a politician speak on this.

Last week we watched part of Spike Lee’s documentary When the Levees Broke and discussed it alongside the first few chapters of Philippe Bourgois’ In Search of Respect to talk about issues of politics, culture, race, and space. Space is a rarely discussed issue in sociology, save for a few ethnographies (Dave Grazian speaks of this gap in his fabulous Blue Chicago)

One sociologist at the forefront of these concerns (and not an ethnographer) is John Logan, who has provided a report (pdf) on Katrina as a social disaster. Here’s a image from it:


I’m always fascinated by memory maps, and one of the lovely (and distracting) things about the InterGoogle is that there are wonders that are just a few clicks away. I have no idea how I reached this point, but there is a great Flickr collection of memory maps which are, at times amusing. There are others that highlight notions of spatial inequality. Here’s Ithaca, NY. Here’s London:386051891_e1fd80dc5b_o.jpg

By the way, if you are an educator, HBO films provides education packs for free. Check out ‘Teaching The Levees,’ a collaboration between Teacher’s College and HBO. I suggested that we have a ‘Sociology 101 Movie Night’ to get the three 101’s using the same films (out of class) to energize class discussion… Pretty cool. It’ll be interesting to see if we can organize it.

Update, from Boing Boing:


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