What the built environment does to people: the lack of public spaces and democracy in the district of Los Olivos

Public spaces are essential to city life. Public spaces are places such as plazas, parks, streets lined with things to do, where people can see other people. “Others” are not just family and neighbors, but moreover people one would not normally see in one’s own area of residence, including people from different socioeconomic backgrounds or from areas of the city different from ours. Public spaces are thus central for people to become accustomed to seeing strangers and developing a sense of diversity and civic congeniality. The district of Los Olivos (Lima, Peru) has developed as an up-and-coming residential neighborhood with lots of parks but with no real public spaces. In this article, I explore how this affects public life and people's high sense of danger and lack of public security.

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Technology, music and how we understand society through popular culture: Kraftwerk, Yellow Magic Orchestra, and electronic music in the 1970s

What is the meaning of  music to a society? Everyone has a special relationship with music, but not everyone can very clearly say what makes a song, a style or band special to someone. By looking at the cases of the two grandfathers of electronic music (Kraftwerk in Germany, Yellow Magic Orchestra in Japan), and how electronic music emerged in Germany and Japan in the 1970s, we can explore the relationship between popular music and the social, historical and cultural context in which it appears.

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The end of capitalism is at hand? This is the most capitalist thing one could say!

The argument in this article is based on the notion that access to information is getting humanity out of Capitalism. But access to information is limited around the world [...] What the author is arguing is that, from the Capitalist producer point of view, this is a different type of Capitalism… but the rest of society continues to “thrive” under the ideas, systems of exploitation (material and information) made from above??? Dear gents and ladies, this is Capitalism at its best!

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Patti Smith: on the relationship between creativity and the urban space of New York City

One of my heroines, talking about the relationship between creativity and the city (or more specifically, how New York City --specifically the East Village--has lost its creative edge to favor the clean, high-end of the "creative industry"). This is a great interview!

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