The Character of the City Boston in J Anthony Lukas’ Common Ground and Richard Broadman’s Mission Hill and the Miracle of Boston In this course we have learned that a city’s character is “a legacy for seeing, interpreting, exploiting, and transforming its social, cultural and political opportunities as a physical community.” How is it possible for a city like Boston to have character? Well, the institutional and cultural continuity along with the resistance and reconstruction of culture has allowed the character of Boston to be defined simply by the underlying idea of conflict.
Through J Anthony Lukas’ Common Ground and Richard Broadman’s Mission Hill and the Miracle of Boston, we can see that the catalyst for this sense of conflict has been social dissentions between classes and races. These dissentions are clearly detailed through both the Urban Renewal plans of Mission Hill in the 1960s and 1970s and the school busing case of 1974.When looking at the character of Boston one must understand the amount of controversy our city has encountered as well as the way they have identified and resolved these crisis’s.
Through this deduction along with my own personal experience of living in Boston a step towards finding a distinct character of Boston may be possible. When analyzing conflict as the character of Boston, you will find that conflict is triadic not dyadic. This means that there are three parties involved instead of just two parties. This is important when looking at the two issues of urban renewal and busing. The concept of conflict includes established insiders with many options, struggling insiders with some options and ascendant outsiders with few or no options. When comparing this information to both urban renewal c.
. .Boston a better place to be because it has already experienced so many things. From early revolutionary leaders to the fairly recent quota case at Boston Latin, Boston had seen its share of social dissention. Boston has resolved conflicts between different groups very professionally and orderly. In the past thirty years since the busing case not many cases of racial problems have surfaced. I think Boston provides the country with a very detailed and specific look at its issues. It seems that all sides of the issue are looked at very carefully before a decision is made. Through the urban renewal case and the busing case of 1974 one can see that when finding a distinct characteristic one would find conflict to be it. This sense of conflict surrounds every issue and blankets the ideas expressed in the movie, Mission Hill Miracle of Boston and the book Common Ground.
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