Daniel Brook – A History of Future Cities

20130301 Future Cities

The title of this book at first seems misleading. When one thinks of ‘future cities’ of the past, the usual suspects are places like classical Athens, renaissance Florence, 19th century Paris, or 20th century New York where new forms of urban existence were pioneered and new types of space came into being. Brook’s subjects – St Petersburg, Shanghai, Mumbai and Dubai – are stories of mistranslated attempts to repeat the successes of the Western world in areas with highly specific histories of their own. But this is the point – as the balance of power in the world becomes more multipolar, each growing global metropolis must find its own route through the urban precedents set by Western cultures. It is these ‘masquerades of modernity’ that Brook seeks.

full article in the RIBA Journal