The Dependent City Revisited: The Political Economy of Urban Development and Social Policy

By Paul Kantor | Go to book overview

About the Book and Author

Here is a book that makes sense of the L.A. riots, homelessness, tax giveaways, and the other big urban issues that are back in the national spotlight. In this streamlined and updated new edition of his classic book, The Dependent City, Paul Kantor now focuses on economic development and social welfare policies to reveal the key dilemmas of American urban politics. Returning to a political economy theme, Kantor explores how city governments have struggled to escape and accommodate the reality of their economic dependency in the policies that they've pursued.

Revisiting cities across the nation, Kantor finds not only that they have become more dependent but also that the character of this dependency has changed and deepened. Exploring local regimes in the Frostbelt and Sunbelt and in suburbia, he finds that they frequently act more like captives of big business rather than as representatives of citizens. Local attempts to promote social justice increasingly run up against a wall of economic dependency created by federal policies and business power.

This book signals how American cities can find ways of overcoming this dependency by working together with states and the federal government to promote healthy, democratic urban politics. The Dependent City Revisited is an accessible, provocative supplement for a wide variety of courses in urban studies and political economy as well as stimulating reading for anyone who is interested in understanding America's urban mosaic.

Paul Kantor is professor of political science at Fordham University.

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The Dependent City Revisited: The Political Economy of Urban Development and Social Policy
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents VII
  • Tables and Illustrations XI
  • Preface XIII
  • 1 - The Dependent City and Urban Politics 1
  • Notes 14
  • 2 - The Emergence of the Dependent City: Mercantile Democracy 17
  • Notes 39
  • 3 41
  • Notes 75
  • 4 - The Postindustrial Political Economy: The New Dependent City 77
  • Notes 111
  • 5 - Urban Entrepreneurship: The Mainstream of Community Development 113
  • Notes 139
  • 6 - The Politics of Decline and Conversion: Central Cities 141
  • 7 - Growth and Dependency: The Politics of Suburbia and the Sunbelt 161
  • Notes 190
  • 8 - The Governmentalization of Inequality 193
  • Notes 211
  • 9 - Can Dependent Cities Redistribute? 213
  • 10 - The Future of the Dependent City 231
  • References 247
  • About the Book and Author 267
  • Index 269
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