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Cover for Metropolis Berlin

Metropolis Berlin

1880–1940 (Weimar and Now: German Cultural Criticism #46)

Iain Boyd Whyte (Editor), David Frisby (Editor)


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Metropolis Berlin: 1880-1940 reconstitutes the built environment of Berlin during the period of its classical modernity using over two hundred contemporary texts, virtually all of which are published in English translation for the first time. They are from the pens of those who created Berlin as one of the world’s great cities and those who observed this process: architects, city planners, sociologists, political theorists, historians, cultural critics, novelists, essayists, and journalists. Divided into nineteen sections, each prefaced by an introductory essay, the account unfolds chronologically, with the particular structural concerns of the moment addressed in sequence—be they department stores in 1900, housing in the 1920s, or parade grounds in 1940. Metropolis Berlin: 1880-1940 not only details the construction of Berlin, but explores homes and workplaces, public spaces, circulation, commerce, and leisure in the German metropolis as seen through the eyes of all social classes, from the humblest inhabitants of the city slums, to the great visionaries of the modern city, and the demented dictator resolved to remodel Berlin as Germania.

Praise For Metropolis Berlin: 1880–1940 (Weimar and Now: German Cultural Criticism #46)

“Rich and engrossing. . . . Berlin’s transformation takes place vividly before our eyes.”
— Andrew Mead

"An invaluable storehouse of material. . . . Astonishing in its range."
— Ritchie Robertson

“Rich and engrossing. . . . Berlin’s transformation takes place vividly before our eyes.”
— Andrew Mead

"Metropolis Berlin is a superb collection of important texts. The selections are at once representative and delightfully off-beat; the editorial signposts are helpful but do not discourage rogue exploration or thematic innovation by the reader; and the presentation (from translation quality to layout design) is excellent. An absolute no-brainer, a must-have for every library, Germanist, and lover of Berlin."
— Studies in Twentieth and Twenty-First Century Literature

University of California Press, 9780520270374, 632pp.

Publication Date: November 27, 2012

About the Author

Iain Boyd Whyte is Professor of Architectural History at the University of Edinburgh and author of Manmade Future (Routledge, 2007). David Frisby was Professor of Sociology at the London School of Economics and author of Cityscapes of Modernity: Critical Explorations (Cambridge, 2001).