May 1, 2017 - Juan Montas
In the afterword of City of Rhetoric, David Fleming argues that in order for the American society to progress and become even better then us humans should realize of the importance between social trends and the environment. The afterword is rather different from the other chapters in the book because in here Fleming uses various example from the history of the country. For example he speaks about statistics and political bills, which he didn’t really do in the other parts of City of Rhetoric. In order for us to understand even better what Fleming is trying to say he restates his main points to make his argument clear. By restating his argument then he is emphasizing on certain important points we need to view such as the relationship between the built environment and the people who live in it.
To start off Fleming gives a quote from the US Housing Act and then he starts discussing his arguments. The quote explores how Congress is trying to make citizens realize that they need to have some goals in life such as living in a proper home or a suitable environment. By using this 1949 Housing Act quote Fleming is able to use other real life example that have happened in the history of the US such as Hurricane Katrina or 9/11. As well, he uses examples that he had previously mentioned throughout the book such as the Cabrini Green family or just simple talking about Chicago. Further on it is interesting to see how David Fleming gives his ultimate opinion on the young kids who go to school. He says, “Perhaps if young people experience, even just within the walls of a high school or college classroom, what it can be like to be members of a strong public, they will grow up and demand such publics in the real world” (214).
In the afterword, David Fleming is trying to persuade the audience and make them believe what he is saying is true. The quote above provides some sort of Patriotism for the American people due to the fact that he is making people want to live in this country. But, in order for this to happen then our built environment should be acceptable for all the people who live in the community. Fleming has hope that the growing generations can fix the problems our community currently have and that this change can keep happening all around the world.
Fleming, David. City of Rhetoric: Revitalizing the Public Sphere in Metropolitan America. SUNY Press, 2008.