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Growth and Structure of Cities

Students may complete a major or minor in Growth and Structure of Cities. Within the major, students may complete a concentration in environmental studies and Latin American and Iberian studies (Haverford). Students may enter the 3-2 Program in City and Regional Planning, offered in cooperation with the University of Pennsylvania.


Juan Manuel Arbona, Assistant Professor
Jeffrey A. Cohen, Senior Lecturer (on leave Fall 2007)
Carola Hein, Associate Professor (on leave 2007-08)
Gary W. McDonogh, Professor and Director
Ingrid Steffensen, Lecturer
Ellen Stroud, Assistant Professor
Daniela Holt Voith, Senior Lecturer

The interdisciplinary Growth and Structure of Cities major challenges the student to understand the dynamic relationship of urban spatial organization and the built environment to politics, economics, cultures and societies. Core introductory classes present analytic approaches that explore the changing forms of the city over time and analyze the variety of ways through which men and women have re-created urban life through time and across cultures. With these foundations, students pursue their interests through classes in planning, architecture, urban social and economic relations, urban history and the environmental conditions of urban life. Advanced seminars bring together these discussions by focusing on specific cities and topics.

Major Requirements

A minimum of 15 courses (11 courses in Cities and four allied courses) is required to complete the major. Two introductory courses (185, 190) balance formal and socio-cultural approaches to urban form and the built environment, and introduce cross-cultural and historical comparison of urban development. The introductory sequence should be completed with a broader architectural survey course (253, 254, 255) and an intensive writing course (229 or substitute). These courses should be completed as early as possible in the first and second years; at least two of them must be taken by the end of the first semester of the sophomore year.

In addition to these introductory courses, each student selects six elective courses within the Cities Program, including cross-listed courses. At least two must be at the 300-level. In the senior year, a third advanced course is required. Most students join together in a research seminar, 398. Occasionally, however, after consultation with the major advisers, the student may elect another 300-level course or a program for independent research. This is often the case with double majors.

Finally, each student must identify four courses that represent additional expertise to complement her work in the major. These may include courses such as physics and calculus for architects, special skills in design, language, or regional interests. Any minor, concentration or second major also fulfills this requirement.

Both the Cities Program electives and the four or more related courses outside the program must be chosen in close consultation with the major advisers in order to create a strongly coherent sequence and focus. Cities courses that are cross-listed with other departments or originate in them can be counted only once in the course selection, although they may be either allied or elective courses.

Students should also note that many courses in the program are given on an alternate-year basis. Many carry prerequisites in art history, economics, history, sociology and the natural sciences. Hence, careful planning and frequent consultations with the major advisers are particularly important. Special arrangements are made for double majors.

Cities majors have created major plans that have allowed them to coordinate their interests in cities with architecture, planning, ethnography, history, law, environmental studies, mass media, social justice, medicine, public health, the fine arts and other fields. No matter the focus, though, each Cities major must develop a solid foundation in both the history of architecture and urban form and the analysis of urban culture and experience. Careful methodological choices, clear analytical writing, and critical visual analysis are also emphases of the major. Early and frequent consultation with major advisers and discussion with other students in the major are an important and productive part of the Cities Program, and part of what helps us all take advantage of the major's flexibility in an organized and rigorous way.

Students with special interests should talk about them with major advisers as soon as possible. This is especially true for students interested in architecture, who will need to arrange studio time (226, 228) as well as accompanying courses in math, science and architectural history; they should contact the program director or Daniela Voith in their first year.

Concentration in Environmental Studies

Students who wish to combine their Cities major with Environmental Studies should talk with Ellen Stroud early in their career. These students should take the introductory environmental studies courses (CITY B175 and GEOL B103) as early as possible in their programs, and plan to take Ecology (BIOL B220) before their senior year.

3-2 Program in City and Regional Planning

Over the past two decades, many Cities majors have entered the 3-2 Program in City and Regional Planning, offered in conjunction with the University of Pennsylvania . Students interested in this program should meet with the program director early in their sophomore year.

Concentration in Latin American and Iberian Studies

The Cities Program has a cooperative arrangement with this Haverford-based concentration. This concentration entails competence in Spanish and completion of SPAN/GNPR 240 at Haverford as well as classes inside and outside the major chosen in consultation with Professor Roberto Castillo at Haverford and Cities advisers. The thesis topic should also reflect interest in Latin American and Iberian topics. This concentration has links to a five-year cooperative M.A. program in Latin American Studies at Georgetown.

Minor Requirements

Requirements for the minor in the Cities Program are at least two out of the four required courses and four Cities electives, of which two must be at the 300-level. Senior Seminar is not mandatory in fulfilling the Cities minor.

Volunteerism and Internships

The Cities Program promotes student volunteer activities and student internships in architectural firms, offices of urban affairs and regional planning commissions. Students wishing to take advantage of these opportunities should consult with the advisers and the Praxis Office before the beginning of the semester.

Study Abroad and Off Campus

Programs for study abroad or off campus are also encouraged, within the limits of the Bryn Mawr and Haverford rules and practices. In general, a one-semester program is preferred, but exceptions are made. The Cities Program regularly works with off-campus and study-abroad programs that are strong in architectural history, planning and design as well as those that allow students to pursue social and cultural interests. Students interested in spending all or part of their junior year away must consult with the major advisers and appropriate deans early in their sophomore year.

Haverford and Swarthmore courses may fulfill electives in the Cities Program. They may be identified in course listings and discussed with the major advisers. Courses at the University of Pennsylvania may sometimes be substituted for certain electives in the Cities Program; these should be examined in conjunction with the major advisers.

CITY B103 Earth System Science and the Environment

(Barber, Division IIL; cross-listed as GEOL B103)

CITY B104 Archaeology of Agricultural and Urban Revolutions From Egypt to India

(Magee, Division III; cross-listed as ARCH B104)

CITY B115 Classical Art

(Donohue, Division III; cross-listed as ARCH B115, CSTS B115 and HART B115)

CITY B121 Exploring Society by the Numbers

(Karen, Division I and Quantitative Skills; cross-listed as SOCL B121) Not offered in 2007-08.

CITY B175 Environment and Society: History, Place and Problems

Introduces the ideas, themes, and methodologies of the interdisciplinary field of environmental studies, beginning with definitions: what is nature? what is environment? and how do people and their settlements fit into each? Then moves to distinct disciplinary approaches in which scholarship can and does (and does not) inform others. Assignments introduce methodologies of environmental studies, requiring reading landscapes, working with census data and government reports, critically interpreting scientific data, and analyzing work of experts. (Stroud, Division I; cross-listed as SOCL B175)

CITY B185 Urban Culture and Society

Examines techniques and questions of the social sciences as tools for studying historical and contemporary cities. Topics include political-economic organization, conflict and social differentiation (class, ethnicity and gender), and cultural production and representation. Both qualitative and quantitative methods are explored. Philadelphia features prominently in discussion, reading and exploration. (Arbona, McDonogh, Division I; cross-listed as ANTH B185)

CITY B190 The Form of the City: Urban Form from Antiquity to the Present

This course studies the city as a three-dimensional artifact. A variety of factors geography, economic and population structure, politics, planning and aesthetics are considered as determinants of urban form. (Cohen, Division I or III; cross-listed as HART B190)

CITY B203 Ancient Greek Cities and Sanctuaries

(Wright, Division III; cross-listed as ARCH B203)

CITY B205 Social Inequality

(Karen, Division I; cross-listed as SOCL B205) Not offered in 2007-08.

CITY B206 Statistical Methods in Economics

(Vartanian, Quantitative Skills; cross-listed as ECON B203)

CITY B207 Topics in Urban Studies: History of Architecture and Urbanism in Philadelphia

(Cohen, Division I or III)

CITY B209 Medical Anthropology

(Pashigian, Division I; cross-listed as ANTH B210) Not offered in 2007-08.

CITY B210 Natural Hazards

(Weil, Division II and Quantitative Skills; cross-listed as GEOL B209) Not offered in 2007-08.

CITY B212 Medieval Architecture

(Kinney, Division III; cross-listed as HART B212) Not offered in 2007-08.

CITY B213 Taming the Modern Corporation

(Ross, Division I; cross-listed as ECON B213) Not offered in 2007-08.

CITY B214 Public Finance

(Stahnke, Division I; cross-listed as ECON B214)

CITY B215 Urban Economics

(Staff, Division I; cross-listed as ECON B215)

CITY B217 Research Methods and Theories

This course engages quantitative, qualitative and spatial techniques in the investigation and analysis of urban issues. While the emphasis is on designing research strategies in the context of public policy, students interested in other areas should also consider this course. This course is designed to help students prepare for their senior thesis. Form and topic will vary. (Arbona, Division I or III)

CITY B218 Globalization and the City

This course introduces students to contemporary issues related to the urban built environment in Africa, Asia and Latin America (collectively referred to as the Third World or developing countries) and the implications of recent political and economic changes. (Arbona, Division I) Not offered in 2007-08.

CITY B221 U.S. Economic History

(Redenius, Division I; cross-listed as ECON B221) Not offered in 2007-08.

CITY B222 Introduction to Environmental Issues: Policy-Making in Comparative Perspective

(Hager, Division I; cross-listed as POLS B222) Not offered in 2007-08.

CITY B225 Economic Development

(Rock, Division I; cross-listed as ECON B225) Not offered in 2007-08.

CITY B226 Introduction to Architectural and Urban Design

This studio design course introduces the principles of architectural and urban design. Prerequisites: some history of art or history of architecture and permission of instructor. (Olshin, Voith, Division III)

CITY B227 Topics in Modern Planning

Provides a general overview of themes in planning or of specific cities, depending on year and professor. (Hein, Division I; cross-listed as HART B227) Not offered in 2007-08.

CITY B228 Problems in Architectural Design

A continuation of CITY 226 at a more advanced level. Prerequisites: CITY 226 or other comparable design work and permission of instructor. (Olshin, Voith, Division III)

CITY B229 Comparative Urbanism: Colonial and Post-Colonial Cities

An examination of approaches to urban development that focuses on intensive study and systematic comparison of individual cities through an original research paper developed through multiple drafts. In 2007, the class will grapple with issues of power and discrimination embedded in the colonial city, decolonization and post-colonialism, focusing on Hong Kong, Belfast (Northern Ireland), French North Africa and cities of the Mexican-American border, (McDonogh, Division I; cross-listed as ANTH B229 and EAST B229)

CITY B230 Topics in German Cultural Studies

(Kenosian, Division I or III; cross-listed as GERM B223) Not offered in 2007-08.

CITY B232 Latin American Urban Development

A theoretical and empirical analysis in a historical setting of the factors that have shaped the urban development of Latin America , with emphasis on the relationship between political and social change and economic growth. (Arbona, Division I; cross-listed as HART B232) Not offered in 2007-08.

CITY B234 Environmental Economics

(Rock, Division I; cross-listed as ECON B234)

CITY B237 Themes in Modern African History: Urbanization in Africa

(Ngalamulume, Division I; cross-listed as HIST B237)

CITY B238 The Economics of Globalization

(Ceglowski, Division I; cross-listed as ECON B236)

CITY B242 Urban Field Reasearch Methods

(Takenaka, Division I; cross-listed as ANTH B242 and SOCL B242) Not offered in 2007-08.

CITY B244 Great Empires of the Ancient Near East

(Ataç, Division III; cross-listed as ARCH B244, HIST B244 and POLS B244) Not offered in 2007-08.

CITY B247 Topics: German Cultural Studies

(Kenosian, Division I or III; cross-listed as GERM B223 and HIST B247) Not offered in 2007-08.

CITY B248 Modern Middle East Cities

(Harrold, Division I; cross-listed as HEBR B248 and POLS B248) Not offered in 2007-08.

CITY B249 Asian American Communities

(Takenaka, Division I; cross-listed as ANTH B249 and SOCL B249)

CITY B253 Survey of Western Architecture

The major traditions in Western architecture are illustrated through detailed analysis of selected examples from classical antiquity to the present. The evolution of architectural design and building technology, and the larger intellectual, aesthetic and social context in which this evolution occurred, are considered. (Cast, Division III; cross-listed as HART B253)

CITY B254 History of Modern Architecture

A survey of the development of modern architecture since the 18th century, the course concentrates on the period since 1890. (Steffensen, Division III; cross-listed as HART B254)

CITY B255 Survey of American Architecture

This course examines forms, figures, contexts, and imaginations, in the construction of the American built environment from colonial times to the present. (Steffensen, Division III; cross-listed as HART B255)

CITY B258 L'espace réinventé

(Anderson, Division III; cross-listed as FREN B258) Not offered in 2007-08.

CITY B259 Pompeii

(Webb, Division III; cross-listed as ARCH B252)

CITY B260 Sport and Spectacle in Ancient Greece and Rome

(Scott, Wright, Division III; cross-listed as ARCH B255, CSTS B255 and HIST B285)

CITY B266 Schools in American Cities

(Cohen, Division I; cross-listed as EDUC B266 and SOCL B266)

CITY B267 History of Philadelphia , 1682 to Present

(Shore, Division I or III; cross-listed as HIST B267)

CITY B268 Greek and Roman Architecture

(Webb; cross-listed as ARCH B268 and HART B268)

CITY B270 Japanese Architecture and Planning

The built environment in Japan does not resemble its American or European counterparts, leading visitors to characterize it as visually chaotic even as recent observers praise its lively traditional neighborhoods. This course explores characteristics of Japanese cities, their history and presence, and examines the particular cultural, political, economic and social contexts of urban form in Japan. (Hein, Division III; cross-listed as EAST B270 and HART B270) Not offered in 2007-08.

CITY B271 History of Photography

(Schwartz, Division III; cross-listed as HART B271)

CITY B273 Topics in Early and Medieval China

(Lin, Division I; cross-listed as EAST B272 and HART B272) Not offered in 2007-08.

CITY B278 American Environmental History

Explores major themes of American environmental history, examining changes in the American landscape, development of ideas about nature and the history of environmental activism. Explores definitions of nature, environment and environmental history while investigating interactions between Americans and their physical worlds. (Stroud, Division I or III; cross-listed as HIST B278)

CITY 286 Themes in British Empire: Birth of Nations, Nationalism and Decolonization in South Asia 1880s-1970s

(Kale, Division I or III; cross-listed as HIST B286 and POLS B286)

CITY B303 Topics in American History

(Shore, Division I or III; cross-listed as HIST B303) Not offered in 2007-08.

CITY B305 Ancient Athens : Monuments and Art

(Miller-Collett; cross-listed as ARCH B305) Not offered in 2007-08.

CITY B306 Advanced Fieldwork Techniques: Places in Time

A seminar and workshop for research into the history of place, with student projects presented in digital form on the Web. Architectural and urban history, research methods and resources for probing the history of place, the use of tools for creating Web pages and digitizing images, and the design for informational experiences are examined. (Cohen, Division I or III) Not offered in 2007-08.

CITY B308 Topics in Photography: City Records: Documenting Social Space

(Schwartz, Division III; cross-listed as HART B308)

CITY B312 Topics in Medieval Art

( Easton ; cross-listed as HART B311) Not offered in 2007-08.

CITY B314 Topics in Social Policy

(staff, Division I; cross-listed as ECON B314)

CITY B319 Advanced Topics in German Cultural Studies: Kafka's Prague

(Kenosian, Division III; cross-listed as GERM B321)

CITY B321 Technology and Politics

(Hager; cross-listed as POLS B321) Not offered in 2007-08.

CITY B323 Topics in Renaissance Art: The Fresco as Public Art

(Cast, Division III; cross-listed as HART B323)

CITY B328 Analysis of Geospatial Data Using GIS

(staff; cross-listed as ARCH B328, BIOL B328 and GEOL B328)

CITY B330 Comparative Economic Sociology: Societies of the North and South

(Osirim; cross-listed as SOCL B330)

CITY B334 Seminar on the Economics of Poverty and Discrimination

(staff; cross-listed as ECON B324) Not offered in 2007-08.

CITY B335 Mass Media and the City

Examines urban culture as a ground for conflict, domination and resistance. We will work with both theoretical and applied analysis of production, texts, readings and social action within a political/economic framework. Topics include imagery, ownership, boundaries, creation of audience and public spheres and reinterpretation. We will also consider the implications of critical cultural policy for contemporary cities. Materials are drawn from U.S. and global media, from comics to the Internet, with special emphasis on film, news, and television. (McDonogh, Division I; cross-listed as ANTH B335)

CITY B336 East Asian Development

(Rock, Division I; cross-listed as EAST B335 and ECON B335) Not offered in 2007-08.

CITY B338 The New African Diaspora: African and Caribbean Immigrants in the United States

(staff, Division I; cross-listed as SOCL B338)

CITY B339 The Policy Making Process

(Golden; cross-listed as POLS B339) Not offered in 2007-08.

CITY B345 Advanced Topics in Environment and Society: Environmental Justice in Action

This Praxis 3 seminar will put the ideas and ideals of environmental justice into action by combining seminar meetings, readings and writing assignments about environmental inequalities with volunteer action. Every student will work six to eight hours per week with a community organization to promote environmental justice. Among the issues we will be working with will be food security, health and healthcare, access to green space, safe housing and communities, and pollution, with particular attention to the interactions between those issues and racism, poverty and discrimination. Priority will be given to students who have a project and worksite approved by December 14th. (Stroud, Division I; cross-listed as SOCL B346)

CITY B348 Culture and Ethnic Conflict

(Ross; cross-listed as POLS B348) Not offered in 2007-08.

CITY B355 Topics in the History of London

(Cast, Division I or III; cross-listed as HART B355) Not offered in 2007-08.

CITY B360 Topics in Urban Culture and Society: The Right to the City

Class relations, conflictive and creative, are at the heart of urban change. While working class movements and elite domination are central to our discussions of urban culture, the emergence, demands and anxieties of urban middle classes often have been treated as a backdrop for any discussion. This seminar will bring the nature, divisions, impact and fear of middle classes worldwide into sharper focus, drawing on historical and contemporary materials from Asia, Europe, Latin America and North America . (Arbona, Division I or III; cross-listed as ANTH B359)

CITY B365 Techniques of the City

Critical reflections on the technologies and methods of the urban planning enterprise including the investigations, which shape our vision of the city. Topics include construction and reproduction of social models, urban infrastructure, modes of representation and patterns of control. (McDonogh, Division I) Not offered in 2007-08.

CITY B368 Topics in Medieval History

(staff, Division I or III; cross-listed as CSTS B368 and HIST B368) Not offered in 2007-08.

CITY B377 Topics in Modern Architecture

Topics course; course content varies. The topic for Fall 2007 is Frank Lloyd Wright and Le Corbusier; the topic for Spring 2008 is Art Museums. (Steffensen, Division III; cross-listed as HART B377)

CITY B378 The Architecture and Planning of American Collegiate Campuses

Explores the architecture, planning, and visual rhetoric, of American collegiate campuses from their early history to the present. Historical consideration of design trends and projected imageries will be complemented by student exercises involving documentary research on design genesis and contexts, discussion of critical reception, evidence of contemporary performance and perception, and digital presentation. (staff, Division III) Not offered in 2007-08.

CITY B397 Senior Seminar in Environmental Studies

(Barber, Stroud; cross-listed as ANTH B397, BIOL B397 and GEOL B397)

CITY B398 Senior Seminar

An intensive research seminar designed to guide students in writing a senior thesis. (Arbona, McDonogh, Steffensen, Stroud)

CITY B399 Senior Thesis

Students can write a senior thesis written as an independent study in the spring under extraordinary circumstances and with special permission. (staff)

CITY B403 Independent Study


CITY B415 Teaching Assistant

This opportunity is available only by invitation. (staff)

CITY B425 Cities: Praxis Independent Study


CITY B450 Urban Internships

Individual opportunities to engage in praxis in the greater Philadelphia area; internships must be arranged prior to registration for the semester in which the internship is taken. Enrollment is limited to five students a semester. Prerequisite: permission of instructor. (staff)


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