Rebinding done by Spiralverse

Sidewalk Spiral-Bound | December 20, 2000

Mitchell Duneier, Ovie Carter (Photographs by), Hakim Hasan (Foreword by)

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An original, careful and provocative book about contemporary urban life sure to become a classic

Men working and living on city sidewalks - for whom Jane Jacobs in her now classic THE DEATH AND LIFE OF GREAT AMERICAN CITIES coined the term "public characters" - have become the targets of "quality of life" campaigns in cities nationwide. Mayors scold them. Police keep after them. Businesses want them off the street. Even liberal whites feel uneasy in their presence. These men are seen as proof of the influential "broken windows" theory, which holds that the mere appearance of social disorder leads to crime.

In SIDEWALK, an ethnography of Greenwich Village worthy of Jacobs's, sociologist Mitchell Duneier contends that, far from being incitements to crime, the (mostly poor black) men selling books and magazines on the street are necessary and beneficial to city life today, and that their behavior actually contributes to the order and well-being of the neighborhood. For five years, he spent time on the blocks with them - working with them at their vending tables, hearing their stories and observing the roles they play in the ongoing life of the city.

SIDEWALK brings us into the hearts and minds of the men on the street, showing us not only their common human values but also the many practical and moral choices they must make every day. No other recent book has managed to convey the character of contemporary urban life in all its complexity - its vitality, its class and race conflicts, and the surprising opportunities it offers for empathy among strangers.

Publisher: Macmillan
Original Binding: Trade Paperback
Pages: 400 pages
ISBN-10: 0374527253
Item Weight: 0.8 lbs
Dimensions: 5.6 x 1.3 x 8.3 inches