A conversation with author and journalist Cole Stangler
Fantastic conversation. I share your enthusiasm for uncovering what makes Paris a real and complex city today. That’s what makes the city come alive. Cole Stangler’s book is a wonderful and enriching addition to that line of inquiry!
Certainly not unique to Paris. Manhattan used to have Stuyvesant Town reserved for middle income, many municipal workers, and Soho was reserved for proven artists. No more. David Byrne wrote about wealth inequality crushing creative energy in NY 10 years ago. Housing indeed is key. Enlightened city planners and leaders are scarce.
What an interesting read! Thank you for sharing. I have been to Paris again this fall and found it liveable, nice, pleasant and authentic - everywhere around Gare du Nord there are new restaurants popping up, with friendly prices. I can compare it with Lisbon's skyrocketing prices and I have no doubt: the thriving economic fabric of Paris and its growth potential would make me move there rather than to Lisbon, as many French young people are (still, and inexplicably) doing.
the idea that rent control is a good thing is fallacious and naive. It helps the lucky few who get it, but hurts almost everyone else, and reduces the available stock of housing, including low-cost housing.It encourages the overconsumption of housing by people who don't really need it. I suggest you read Thomas Sowell on the subject.
Looking forward to reading this. Always have enjoyed Cole's journalism. However, I also need to know why the US and UK editions required different titles and subtitles. :-)
hooray for Cole and for anti-capitalism! may we have more of it everywhere. Really enjoyed this interview. A lot of Paris now feels theme-park-ish and geared toward tourism. Interesting how 18th, 19th, 20th vote so differently from the rest also eh.
Great to see you spotlight Cole Sangler!
Im going to get this book Lindsey,because this is a subject that interests me very much. It's going on everywhere. It's happening in the English city I live in. In fact,about five or so years ago I adopted a neglected garden plot only about a mile from me along the cycle and pedestrian way to the city of Bath. Once I started going there regularly to plant or trim and tidy I discovered something that I found extraordinary and at first had trouble coping with in my mind. It was a strong case of Cognitive Dissonance but Ive adjusted now. All my life it was a given that this area which I live closer to now than then was a desperately poor area and racked with crime and drugs,just don't go there,lol,unless you're actually wanting a walk on the wild side. So when I discovered that a handy cafe had opened in the road just above the community garden (i only adopted one bit) I started going there for a tea or coffee when I finished. I found I was sitting in the midst of upmarket,stylish,well educated people in fact exactly the people like yourself et al that I see in Jay Swansons helpful Paris like it really is nowadays videos. I'm in my scruffy garden clothes and all around me people are talking about their degrees,their postgraduate degree,their biochemical neurological research,their planned hike through South America,their draft for the book they plan to write,and I'm thinking,"This is Easton,this is Easton,this is where the poor people live,where its all crime and desolation." And that opened my eyes to a situation I'd been unaware of or not how close to me it was washing up. Since the 1980s creative,media type people have been leaving London to live and work in Bristol because as the canniest first pioneers realised,you can live a London lifestyle at a fraction of the price and buy the sort of house that would cost you half a million in London for a tenth of that. Or you could. Because of course now those people,nice people,lovely people once they attain a critical mass,things change. There is a kickback against increasing " gentrification " but it's unstoppable now,and to be honest areas that were manky,rubbish strewn and mingy turn nice with flowery tiny front gardens and feel "safe". Now I see that Upper Easton is posh while Lowe Easton is still desperately poor and under resourced. I live in this city but I wasn't even aware of that until my Damascus moment. Regarding Paris I never wanted to visit that famed and fabulous city(I always thought totally beyond me which it is but I can flouder around),until 2017 when my sister took me on one of those inexpensive coach trips. We had one dayin the coach being driven all around the city. Our driver was great and he told us about it all but I felt like a goldfish or such. Out there was that famed city,but I was in a safe tourist bubble,behind glass. I wanted to be out there,IN that city,among those people,seeing,touching,feeling,smelling and being there. And so remarkably it worked out. I'm glad I saw Mr Swansons videos and didn't waste my time queuing up for the tourist things my first trips. I feel happier to do them now. I like that Paris for all it's amazing,ancient,bloody and artistic history is also a "normal" place where people who live "normal" lives live (unless they have to commute in from the banlieus). On a previous visit I went to the suburb of Saint Denis,I went to see the french monarchs tombs in the cathedral. But I got so entranced by the shops in the High st,all African shops,that I spent my whole time there,it was vibrant and energetic and a bit edgy. I loved it. Just like my city here,I felt well at home.
There is so much to think about with just this interview, I am looking forward to reading the book. Venice has so many of the same concerns & conflicts (with the mainland in Mestre playing the role of banlieue but with the power structure flipped)