The Geography of Nowhere: The Rise and Decline of America's Man-Made Landscape

James Howard Kunstler, Author Simon & Schuster $22.5 (0p) ISBN 978-0-671-70774-3
In this inconsistent but provocative analysis, Kunstler ( Blood Solstice ), a novelist and journalist, mixes memoir, historical essay and reporting to condemn the car-dependent suburbanization of America. Kunstler, who writes ably, casts a very wide net: he finds the roots of American individualism in pre-colonial property ownership, decries the abstracting influence of modernism on city architecture and slams road-builder Robert Moses to support his contention that suburbia is a social environment without soul. He offers an intriguing history of the decline of Saratoga Springs, N.Y., his hometown, describes trips to failing Detroit and well-planned Portland, Ore., and dissects ``capitals of unreality'' like Disney World and Atlantic City. His worthy but sketchily described solutions--a sustainable economy, better neighborhood development and preservation of the countryside--could, however, each merit a book. (June)
Reviewed on: 05/31/1993
Release date: 06/01/1993
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