Tuesday, April 22, 2008

"The Big Sort" - residential self-selection

The basic premice sounds logical and would be an interesting read.

On first glance, I'd have to assume that the supposition is correct. People talk about "melting pot" of America, which I don't think has ever really truly existed. My theory is that what has been viewed as "melting" was merely the self-sorting this book talks about. In no small part due to suburbia's rise, and only people in certain economic brackets being able to live there, self-selection at work.


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via Richard Florida and The Creative Class Exchange by Richard : Social Theory on 4/22/08

Big_sort Governing Magazine's Allan Ehrenhalt reviews Bill Bishop's new book in today's Wall Street Journal.

The more diverse America becomes, the more homogeneous it becomes. No, that's not a misprint; it is the thesis of "The Big Sort," Bill Bishop's rich and challenging book about the ways in which the citizens of this country have, in the past generation, rearranged themselves into discrete enclaves that have little to say to one another and little incentive to bother trying. "As Americans have moved over the past three decades," Mr. Bishop proclaims, "they have clustered in communities of sameness, among people with similar ways of life, beliefs and in the end, politics."

I read the book in galleys and have collaborated with Bill and Bob Cushing, his statistician counterpart over the years. This is a remarkable book detailing the multidimensional sorting of the American population and the increasing importance of geography and location for every facet of our lives.  Go out and grab yourself a copy of this book, read it from cover to cover - if you want to understand the forces that have shaped and will continue to shape American politics and the culture of everyday life.


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