Paul Dobraszczyk is a researcher and writer and a teaching fellow at the Bartlett School of Architecture, London. He is the author of The Dead City: Urban Ruins and the Spectacle of Decay and Iron, Ornament and Architecture in Victorian Britain, as well as coeditor of Global Undergrounds: Exploring Cities Within, the last also published by Reaktion Books.
A fascinating, erudite survey of visionary cities, from the ocean depths to the skies above. At once fantastical and meticulous, Dobraszczyk's book is anchored like Robida's soaring airships to iron structures. An engaging and revealing text that demonstrates when we create speculative cities, whether utopian or dystopian, we are always writing about our present; our dreams, our fears, and our memories. Delving into fictional places, we are delving into ourselves. --Darran Anderson, author of Imaginary Cities When we dream of the future, Dobraszczyk suggests in this rich and impeccably timed new book, we often dream of buildings. Dobraszczyk makes the case that visions of future worlds, from ancient myths to science fiction, are resolutely urban because of a deep imaginative pull that only cities can satisfy. --Geoff Manaugh, author of A Burglar's Guide to the City Future Cities is a philosophically and culturally wideranging look at the usefulness of imagined cities. Appropriately for this examination of creativity, its classification of cities into three types is itself rather imaginative: unmoored (in the water or air), vertical (skyscrapers and subterranean structures), and unmade (ruins). The text is accompanied by a number of images that usefully show how visual artists have imagined future cities. --Environment and Urbanization A compendious, dizzying collection of the cities of the future, and their analogues in the present. Future Cities holds out the important hope that our cities could be better--fairer, more equal, more open--rather than just taller and weirder. --Owen Hatherley, author of Militant Modernism and Trans-Europe Express Dobraszczyk's eloquent redefinition of ecology, of the imagination, and of architecture is breathtaking in its audacity and indisputably brilliant. Future Cities is much more than a book about buildings or Blade Runner, dealing as it does with the critical importance of multiplicity and integration in an increasingly disordered world. --Australian