Modernity and the Development of Life in the Metropolis The problem of modernity is nowhere more apparent than in the development of the metropolis, or cityscape, over the past few hundred years. In his essay “Modernity, Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow,” Marshall Berman outlines some of the key factors and characteristics of modernity, in part as they apply to the shifting demographic patterns that occurred during the modern era. From his description, and an application of analysis from Karl Marx, we find that the shape of modernity has been intimately connected with the development of the metropolis and its constituent effects on the world. Berman traces the emergence of the modern era to the late 18th century, citing Rousseau as one of...The end:
.....his statement requires us to delve deeper into the nature of modernity itself and its destabilizing effects on human societies. Berman and Marx both accurately describe the modern era as a period of intense contradiction and turmoil, a fact that could not help but be reflected in the development of the metropolis. Drawn by the promise of economic stability and affluence, the workers who would build those cities were just as often (if not more so) drawn into a world of inequality and uncertainty. This deep division is the defining characteristic of not only the modern era but of its products, such as the metropolis. References Berman, Marshall. All That Is Solid Melts into Air: The Experience of Modernity. New York: Simon and Schuster, 1982.