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April 2017 Vol. 54 No. 8

University Press of Colorado

The following review appeared in the April 2017 issue of CHOICE. The review is for your internal use only. Please review our Permission and Reprints Guidelines or email

Social & Behavioral Sciences
Political Science - Comparative Politics

Political landscapes of capital cities, ed. by Jessica Joyce Christie, Jelena Bogdanović, and Eulogio Guzmán. University Press of Colorado 406p index afp ISBN 9781607324683, $85.00; ISBN 9781607324690 ebook, contact publisher for price.

In this engaging and interdisciplinary volume, editors Christie (East Carolina), Bogdanović (Iowa State), and Guzmán (Tufts) present a collection of essays that examine how politics shapes the urbanism of capital cities. The contributors collectively draw on Adam T. Smith’s political landscape framework to understand how culture and ideology shape the urban design of capital cities. In addition to chapters contributed by the editors, this volume features the work of six other authors. Kalas examines the statutes and monuments of ancient Rome, which conveyed Diocletian and Maximian ideals of the city. Rod-Ari analyzes the role of the physical landscape and built environment in shaping the patterns of Bangkok's development o during the 18th century. Other contributors examine similar patterns of development in Cusco, Tehran, Mexico-Tenochtitlan, and the Roman and Byzantine Empires. The chapters are supplemented with in-depth narratives and rich illustrations. Political Landscapes of Capital Cities is an important contribution to our understanding of the historical roles that space and politics play in determining the shape and memory of capital cities throughout the world. Humanists will appreciate the methodological rigor that the contributors employ in their approaches to this cohesive theme.

--T. J. Vicino, Northeastern University

Summing Up: Highly recommended. Graduate students and faculty.