Thursday, April 29, 2010

Neighborhoods or communities?

From the dustjacket of In the Neighborhood: The Search for Community on an American Street, One Sleepover at a Time:
Peter Lovenheim has lived on the same street in suburban Rochesters, NY, most of his life. But it is after a brutal murder suicide rocked the community that he was struck by a fact of modern life in the comfortable enclase: No one really knows anyone.
It's the old worry.  When (most) people have the means, they opt for independence and privacy.  And there are trade-offs involved.  And most people romanticize communal life. That having been said, Lovenheim's description of his adventures when he actually offers to meet and engage his neighbors (offering to spend a night) beats most of the standard fare on the topic.