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9. The Metropolis

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Chapter Summary

One can think of a metropolis as a social space that is characterized by a high density of people, the twin processes of spatial segregation and social stratification, and the concentration of the principal political and economic processes of societies. The population sectors could be different groups of ethnic immigrants, but they also could be key elements of the larger metropolis, and the society, itself, such as the financial and manufacturing sectors. Over time certain natural areas of the metropolis emerge, such as the downtown, or central area, as well as outlying residential, or commuter zones. By the 1950s and 1960s, the energies of the industrial metropolis in the West began to diminish, signaling yet, again, another period of major social and metropolitan transformation. In countries like the United States, these changes could be seen in a host of metropolitan areas.

Keywords: colonial times; ethnic immigrants; global economy; industrial metropolis; social space



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