Choose a neighborhood or significant region from one of the world’s major cities. You will discuss this neighborhood in terms of the major themes on urban life and urban change covered in the course material.
Your paper should address questions such as: What is the physical make-up (housing, streets, infrastructure, traffic, etc.) of the neighborhood? What sorts of people (by age, life cycle, class, ancestry, lifestyle, etc.) live there? How have these changed and are changing? What distinctive features of the neighborhood’s physical, social or political make-up seem important for understanding the neighborhood’s way of life? Do you see critical problems in the neighborhood (and, if so, what)?
Discuss the issues of sociological significance (such as segregation, gentrification, poverty, crime, etc.) that are most important in the neighborhood. Use the theories discussed in class to analyze why this neighborhood is experiencing these issues. Finally, discuss some potential policy interventions that might address these issues. Include a discussion of why these issues may be particularly easy or difficult for city government to address. Your choice of neighborhood must be approved by the instructor.
You should gather information about the neighborhood from a variety of sources, such as academic articles, newspaper reports, published histories, or interviews with informants (such as local officials, long-time residents, or merchants). Your paper must include both Census data and at reference to at least one peer-reviewed source.
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