Quotes that sum it up for me… and not just by Jane Jacobs

“What is the city but the people?,” William Shakespeare, Coriolanus, Act III

“The ballet of the good city sidewalk never repeats itself from place to place, and in any one place is always replete with new improvisations.” Jane Jacobs

“We shape our buildings; thereafter they shape us.” Winston Churchill

“What Jacobs did, above all, was to give us a language to appropriate our own experience. As she sits on her front stoop and watches life go by, she seems to embrace the world. Baudelaire said the modern artist should epouser la foule [marry the crowd];  Jacobs may have been the first person to have married her own block … Jacobs’ urban vision contributes to pragmatism… and to participatory democracy.” Marshall Berman, Distinguished Professor of Political Science, City College of New York and the Graduate Center

“Architecture defines a city, and no city has been defined by its architecture—or has influenced global architectural design—like Chicago.” Mayor Rahm Emanuel

“What preservation is really all about is the retention and active relationship of buildings of the past to the community’s functioning present. The accumulation is called culture.” Ada Louise Huxtable

“Historic architecture is part of our culture, just the way art, music, literature, these [are] part of our culture… Architecture’s the only one that’s around us all the time, every day, and that does its magic on us every day. And so, I think people really want the buildings that perform magic in some way, that make them feel special, that makes their heart lift up for a moment as they walk past it, that makes them feel good — even if they never had a reason to go inside.” Paul Goldberger

“We’ve gone a couple of centuries without understanding community. It’s too bad it’s so hard to communicate what pleasure one gets from living with one’s fellow human being.” Robert E. Simon, founder of Reston, Virginia

“We must remember that intelligence is not enough. Intelligence plus character—that is the goal of true education. The complete education gives one not only power of concentration, but worthy objectives upon which to concentrate.” Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

“Every judgment requires historical context…” Nguyen Ngoc Chu, a mathematician (quoted by Roger Cohen, New York Times).

“We’re creatures of the place we’re in…” Kate Jeffery, a behavioural neuroscientist at University College London (Conscious Cities conference No. 2)

 

What are your favorite quotes on these subjects?

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