Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Over capacity

The Historic Districts Council informs me that seating for the lecture "Solving the Tenement Puzzle" has reached capacity and there is already a waiting list.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Solving the tenement puzzle

I'll be giving the illustrated lecture Solving the Tenement Puzzle again, this time at the Neighborhood Preservation Center/Historic Districts Council, 232 East 11th Street (between 2nd and 3rd Avenues), Wednesday, September 25, 6:30pm. Light refreshments will be served.

The talk involves the whole social history of 19th century New York, New York's wild politics, economy, real estate and land use, the development of the immigrant ghetto, speculation, arts, culture and reform. Using the photography of Stefania Zamparelli and Amy Chin, we'll read it all on the face of the tenements. And we'll debunk popular - and even historians' - misconceptions about the tenement.

I'll also address the surprising paradoxes of the immigrant real estate economy in which land rent declines as building rent rises, and the quality of living space (a use value) declines as price (exchange value) increases, contrary to the market outside the immigrant quarter. 

Solving the Tenement Puzzle: dispelling myths and misconceptions of an architecutral vernacular. 
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Monday, September 16, 2013


LES Jewels, the most transgressive man I know: indifferent to safety, security, health, decorum, decency, police, imprisonment, violence, or any protection from all the dangers we fear, the dangers we hide from to crawl nightly into our narrow caves to sleep in beds of denial, dreaming our small worries. He loved to wear crazy jewelry and would always show off his latest, wordlessly. Arihood admired him to no end. The spirit of the old neighborhood lived in him.