Between Eminence and Notoriety

Between Eminence and Notoriety : Four Decades of Radical Urban Planning

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In a career that spanned America's turbulent journey from urban renewal through the Civil Rights movement, the Vietnam War, and the ever-widening economic chasm that engulfed whole populations of the United States, Chester Hartman has worked tirelessly with grassroots activists and progressive planners to bring about meaningful social change. This is an anthology of his most important writings. Following a brief foreword by Jane Jacobs, a compelling autobiographical essay by Hartman contextualizes his work, reveals his motivations and perspective, and focuses on the frailty and foibles of the planning and policy professions. The essay sets the stage for the anthology of Hartman's writings, organized into five parts: displacement and urban renewal; housing problems and policies; organizing and activism; poverty and race; and planning education. The thirty-two chapters accompany Hartman through four decades of planning and activism for social equity. Now director of research at the Washington, DC-based Poverty & Race Research Action Council, Hartman chronicles his work from a focus on gentrification and displacement to public and military-family housing; from interactions with Daniel Patrick Moynihan and James Q. Wilson to Paul Davidoff and Harvey Milk; to his founding of the Planners Network. Students, practitioners, historians, and political activists will find these essays informative, delightful, and inspiring.

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Product details

  • Paperback | 420 pages
  • 178 x 252 x 26mm | 919.99g
  • Rutgers University Press
  • Centre for Urban Policy Research,U.S.
  • New Bruswick, United States
  • English
  • New.
  • 0882851721
  • 9780882851723

Review quote

"[A] valuable account of key aspects of US urban development from the historical point of view of a self-described "radical houser" and "engaged insider," one who has placed predominant emphasis on the fundamental forces of race and class, and who has maintained faith in strategies of advocacy planning and of networking with influential individuals... [T]he book speaks to the credibility, necessity and viability of radical urban planning." --Ian Skelton, Canadian Journal of Urban Research "This exciting book tells the life story of an academic city planner and political activist who struck a balance in his career between the eminence of a Harvard professor and innovator in urban studies, and the notoriety of a radical political gadfly buzzing conservative, academic and government officialdom. Its author chronicles the resistance of several communities in Boston and San Francisco to the destruction of working-class neighborhoods to clear land for "higher uses" in Urban Renewal projects. In the process he shows that scholarship in the halls of academia and activism in the political struggles outside them can mix; indeed, that scholarship and social activity are mutually enriching... Between Eminence and Notoriety, by an eminent radical organizer, teacher and writer, is an excellent reference work for students of the history of the stormy 1960s and 1970s and for progressive social activists in the movements for peace and civil rights, and in community organizing and urban affairs, who are aware of the broader social and political dimensions of their special activity fields. It is also a trumpet call to progressive teachers and thinkers to get out and relish the mind-and-soul stirring life outside their ivory walls." --Morris Zeitlin, Science & Society "[Hartman] takes us through his journey as planner, professor, social analyst, good cause organizer, advocate for the poor, elderly and minorities, and to his present work, the Poverty & Race Research Action Council. He enjoys poking at arrogance and hypocrisy, and does it well." --Social Policy "[V]aluable and provocative." --Michael W. Homel, Planning Perspectives

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