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Why Place Matters: Geography, Identity, and Civic Life in Modern America
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Why Place Matters: Geography, Identity, and Civic Life in Modern America

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3.97  ·  Rating Details ·  35 Ratings  ·  5 Reviews
Contemporary American society, with its emphasis on mobility and economic progress, all too often loses sight of the importance of a sense of “place” and community. Appreciating place is essential for building the strong local communities that cultivate civic engagement, public leadership, and many of the other goods that contribute to a flourishing human life.

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Hardcover, 304 pages
Published February 25th 2014 by Encounter Books (first published February 1st 2014)
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Jennie Richards
Sep 21, 2015 Jennie Richards rated it really liked it
This well-researched book has given me a deeper awareness and consciousness about the meaning and sense of "place." I bought the book because I have come to believe that there are places where we really thrive better than others. Whether it's the energy of the place or city, the sense of community, the physical beauty, culture, arts, nature, people or parks -- there are certain places where each of us becomes more alive, reaches our potential more easily and naturally, and we became our best ...more
The American Conservative
"Ted McAllister closes his essay by noting that “Healthy freedom, at least in the American story, require[s] places that move citizens to love where they live, to find themselves part of a local story … and to invest their time and energy in the evolution of a place strange, distinct, and perhaps even a little weird.” Why Place Matters provides resources that challenge, educate, and encourage anyone disquieted by a felt loss of attachment to consider seriously how place might be revived and our ...more
Bruce
Aug 23, 2014 Bruce rated it really liked it
Collected reflections on local places from a number of disciplinary perspectives, growing out of a 2011 conference at Pepperdine's public policy school. There are several common themes, most notably the importance of place to individual identity, and the need to protect places from the bigs (government, planners, developers). I particularly valued Joseph A. Amato's essay on the role of local historians, and Gary Toth's piece on the impact of transportation policy choices on places.
Jake Cooper
Jan 15, 2015 Jake Cooper rated it it was ok
Two of the 16 essays are good, but the majority do little to dispel the humanities' reputation as:
- vacuous ("Place draws us back to the past, but it also serves us as a launching pad from which we are made capable of thrusting forward and upward.")
- vague science minus data ("What family members do around each other at home has less and less to do with each other.")
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Mills College Library
917.3 W6293 2014
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