Urban Communication: Production, Text, Context

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Timothy A. Gibson, Mark Douglas Lowes
Rowman & Littlefield, 2007 - Language Arts & Disciplines - 241 pages
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City leaders now confront a global competition for economic investment. Not surprisingly, urban elites have cast about for strategies that promise to secure for their cities a share of this future of global economic growth. What is remarkable, however, is that so many of these urban growth strategies are largely symbolic in nature. We see, for example, city leaders competing madly for the Olympics so that they can broadcast spectacular urban vistas to global television audiences. We see officials pouring public funds into tourist amenities, not so much for their tangible economic value, but rather because they help cultivate an image of vitality and renewal. We see, in short, a rich trade in images about the city, usually for strategic economic reasons. But how are these image-building strategies produced in the crucible of local political struggle? How are the local politics of urban redevelopment intertwined with the global politics of circulating bold images of urban vitality? Who, if anyone, benefits from public investment in such 'image-building' activities? Urban Communication brings together a community of scholars from communication, cultural studies, and urban sociology to explore the symbolic dimensions of contemporary city-building, drawing on case studies from around the world.
 

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Contents

Neoliberal Revitalization Prison Building Casinos and Tourism in Louisiana
25
Internet Politics the Singapore Way
39
A NeoBohemian Rhapsody Cultural Vibrancy and Controlled Edge as Urban Development Tools in the New Creative Economy
59
City Living DC Style The PoliticalEconomic Limits of Urban Branding Campaigns
81
They Stand for All the Things I Hate Georgian Architecture and Cultural Memory in Contemporary Dublin
109
Trying to Be WorldClass Ottawa and the Presentation of Self
125
Plugola News for Profit Entertainment and Network Consolidation
139
Communicating Urban Values Through Megasport Events The Case of Australias High Performance Cities
163
From Dangerous Classes to Quiet Rebels Politics of the Urban Subaltern in the Global South
175
The Empire at Ground Zero
197
Bibliography
215
Index
233
About the Contributors
237
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About the author (2007)

Timothy A. Gibson is assistant professor of communication at George Mason University. Mark Lowes is associate professor of communication at the University of Ottawa in Canada.