Richard Sennett is an articulate writer whose style reveals a fascinating mind and above all, a keen pair of eyes. In relating our visual organ to the conscience, he implores us to start seeing our lives as wholly related to and organically integrated with, the cities that we live in. In this thoroughly original and important book, Sennett successfully avoids the tendency of many writers on urbanism to proffer 'well meaning' solutions, but instead takes us on a historical and psychological journey. He convinces his readers to focus on impulses and 'spriritual' reasons behind the creation of cities, ranging from the Greek ideals of 'grace' and 'balance' that produced the 'Agora' to the dilemmas of the modern soul that creates walls made of sheer glass. In chapter after chapter of engrossing reading anyone deeply interested in the well-being of urban life will begin to share his insights on urban forms. He articulates his views using descriptions of ordianry people's lives through history.

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