|Monica L. Smith.|
|Pages/Publication Date:||304 / 2019|
Six thousand years ago, there were no cities on the planet, but today, more than half of the world's population lives in urban areas. Weaving together archeology and contemporary observations, Monica Smith explains the rise of the first urban centers and their connection to our own, finding that we have always had a love/hate relationship with our cities. Pompeii, Rome, and Athens are explored here, as are Tell Brak in modern-day Syria; Mexico's Teotihuacan and Tenochtitlan; and the early cities of India. Along the way, Smith reveals how cities are responsible for the flowering of humankind: the development of networked infrastructure, the rise of an entrepreneurial middle class, and the culture of consumption that produces take-out food and trash.