Urban Legends: The South Bronx in Representation and Ruin

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Product Details
Harvard University Press
Publish Date
6.4 X 9.3 X 1.3 inches | 1.4 pounds

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About the Author
Peter L'Official is Assistant Professor of Literature at Bard College and has received fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Charles Warren Center for Studies in American History at Harvard University. His writing has appeared in the New Yorker, Los Angeles Review of Books, Paris Review, and GQ.
L'Official is a careful, thorough, and inventive scholar, and the story he tells is utterly absorbing. Combining analyses of literature, the built environment, art, and municipal documents, Urban Legends is multidisciplinary work at its finest.--Hua Hsu, author of A Floating Chinaman: Fantasy and Failure across the Pacific
Well conceived, deeply argued, and consistently engaging, Urban Legends is a distinctive and highly original work of cultural history and interpretation that brings fresh insight to conversations about the city and the arts. A fine book.--Carlo Rotella, author of The World Is Always Coming to an End: Pulling Together and Apart in a Chicago Neighborhood
Urban Legends is cultural history at its very best. L'Official demonstrates beautifully how literature, photography, film, journalism, and other renderings of the South Bronx in the imaginations of both its detractors and its defenders powerfully shaped the community's fate.--Lizabeth Cohen, author of Saving America's Cities: Ed Logue and the Struggle to Renew Urban America in the Suburban Age
The great Bronx book we have needed for decades. L'Official cuts through the foliage of lazy journalism, unexamined assumptions, and political rhetoric and brings together the voices of writers, rappers, social scientists, and people on the street. The result is a nuanced picture of the borough, which for almost a century has been neglected, scorned, and viewed as expendable--perhaps the single biggest of New York City's crimes.--Luc Sante, author of Low Life: Lures and Snares of Old New York and The Other Paris