The Feel of the City: Experiences of Urban Transformation

By Nicolas Kenny

© 2014

At the start of the twentieth century, the modern metropolis was a riot of sensation. City dwellers lived in an environment filled with smoky factories, crowded homes, and lively thoroughfares. Sights, sounds, and smells flooded their senses, while changing conceptions of health and decorum forced many to rethink their most banal gestures, from the way they negotiated speeding traffic to the use they made of public washrooms.

The Feel of the City exposes the sensory experiences of city-dwellers in Montreal and Brussels at the turn of the century and the ways in which these shaped the social and cultural significance of urban space. Using the experiences of municipal officials, urban planners, hygienists, workers, writers, artists, and ordinary citizens, Nicolas Kenny explores the implications of the senses for our understanding of modernity.

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Product Details

  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 320 pages
  • Illustrations: 24
  • Dimensions: 6.0in x 0.8in x 9.1in
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SKU# SP003738

  • PUBLISHED JUN 2014

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    Regular Price: $37.95

    ISBN 9781442615816
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    Regular Price: $76.00

    ISBN 9781442647749
  • PUBLISHED JUN 2014

    From: $28.46

    Regular Price: $37.95

Quick Overview

The Feel of the City exposes the sensory experiences of city-dwellers in Montreal and Brussels at the turn of the century and the ways in which these shaped the social and cultural significance of urban space.

The Feel of the City: Experiences of Urban Transformation

By Nicolas Kenny

© 2014

At the start of the twentieth century, the modern metropolis was a riot of sensation. City dwellers lived in an environment filled with smoky factories, crowded homes, and lively thoroughfares. Sights, sounds, and smells flooded their senses, while changing conceptions of health and decorum forced many to rethink their most banal gestures, from the way they negotiated speeding traffic to the use they made of public washrooms.

The Feel of the City exposes the sensory experiences of city-dwellers in Montreal and Brussels at the turn of the century and the ways in which these shaped the social and cultural significance of urban space. Using the experiences of municipal officials, urban planners, hygienists, workers, writers, artists, and ordinary citizens, Nicolas Kenny explores the implications of the senses for our understanding of modernity.

Continue Reading Read Less

Product Details

  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 320 pages
  • Illustrations: 24
  • Dimensions: 6.0in x 0.8in x 9.1in
  • Reviews

    ‘Kenny treats readers to an unusual but fascinating and valuable perspective on industrialization and urbanization… Highly recommended.’


    J. Rogers
    Choice Magazine, vol 52:02:2015

    “Nicolas Kenny’s fascinating study brings together urban history and the history of the senses in an intriguing new synthesis. The Feel of the City is essential reading for anyone interested in the experience of metropolitan living in the era of high modernity.”
    Simon Gunn, Professor of Urban History, University of Leicester
  • Author Information

    Nicolas Kenny is an associate professor in the Department of History at Simon Fraser University.
  • Table of contents

    Introduction – The Body Urban

    Chapter 1 – Comparable Cities

    Chapter 2 – Image Makers

    Chapter 3 – Encounters with Industrial Space

    Chapter 4 – Home for a Rest

    Chapter 5 – Street Scenes

    Conclusion – Keeping in Touch