Palaces for the People

How Social Infrastructure Can Help Fight Inequality, Polarization, and the Decline of Civic Life
Author(s): Eric Klinenberg
Awards:2019-NonFiction-Longlist-Andrew Carnegie Medal
Original Publish Date: Sep 11, 2018
eAudio - unabridged
Audio (8.53 hours)
Product Number: Z100133497
Released: Sep 11, 2018
Business Term: Purchase
ISBN: #9781984827012
Narrator/s: Rob Shapiro
Publisher: Books on Tape
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"A comprehensive, entertaining, and compelling argument for how rebuilding social infrastructure can help heal divisions in our society and move us forward."—Jon Stewart NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY NPR "Engaging."—Mayor Pete Buttigieg, The New York Times Book Review (Editors' Choice) We are living in a time of deep divisions. Americans are sorting themselves along racial, religious, and cultural lines, leading to a level of polarization that the country hasn't seen since the Civil War. Pundits and politicians are calling for us to come together and find common purpose. But how, exactly, can this be done? In Palaces for the People, Eric Klinenberg suggests a way forward. He believes that the future of democratic societies rests not simply on shared values but on shared spaces: the libraries, childcare centers, churches, and parks where crucial connections are formed. Interweaving his own research with examples from around the globe, Klinenberg shows how "social infrastructure" is helping to solve some of our most pressing societal challenges. Richly reported and ultimately uplifting, Palaces for the People offers a blueprint for bridging our seemingly unbridgeable divides. LONGLISTED FOR THE ANDREW CARNEGIE MEDAL FOR EXCELLENCE IN NONFICTION "Just brilliant!"—Roman Mars, 99% Invisible "The aim of this sweeping work is to popularize the notion of 'social infrastructure'—the 'physical places and organizations that shape the way people interact'. . . . Here, drawing on research in urban planning, behavioral economics, and environmental psychology, as well as on his own fieldwork from around the world, [Eric Klinenberg] posits that a community's resilience correlates strongly with the robustness of its social infrastructure. The numerous case studies add up to a plea for more investment in the spaces and institutions (parks, libraries, childcare centers) that foster mutual support in civic life."—The New Yorker "Palaces for the People—the title is taken from the Scottish-American industrialist and philanthropist Andrew Carnegie's description of the hundreds of libraries he funded—is essentially a calm, lucid exposition of a centuries-old idea, which is really a furious call to action."—New Statesman "Clear-eyed . . . fascinating."—Psychology Today

All formats/editions

Author(s): Eric Klinenberg
Product Number EB00717060
Released: Sep 11, 2018
Business Term: 2 Year
Publisher: Broadway Books
ISBN: #9781524761189

Professional reviews

"Sociologist Eric Klinenberg wants listeners to understand his call for a national investment in social infrastructure, the environment that affects our human interactions. Narrator Rob Shapiro makes Klinenberg's pitch in a gentle, generally upbeat tone. Listeners will be intrigued as he details plans for projects involving libraries, schools, and abandoned properties. He also describes projects already at work, those involving New York subway riders, for example. Shapiro reveals the author's cynicism when talking about political polarization, gated communities, and the private social infrastructure he sees surrounding the headquarters of that most ostensibly social of companies-- Facebook. Klinenberg's writing, Shapiro's narration, and the stories of projects from around the globe are likely to pique many listeners' interest. J.A.S. © AudioFile 2018, Portland, Maine"

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