Duke University Press Books
According to the research presented in the book “A City on a Lake: Urban Political Ecology and the Growth of Mexico City” (PDF) Professor Matthew Vitz traces the political and environmental history of Mexico City and explains how the city went from being a forested, water-rich environment to a smog-filled, megacity that is beset by environmental concerns and social injustice. Vitz demonstrates how multiple social and scientific disagreements about Mexico City's water policy, forestry practices, housing conditions, and sanitary engineering contributed to the city's unequal urbanization and subsequent environmental degradation. Mexico City's environmental history helps us better understand how urban power has been exercised, reproduced, and challenged throughout Latin America. Beginning with prerevolutionary efforts to create a hygienic city that was supportive of capitalist growth and continuing through revolutionary demands for a more democratic distribution of resources to the mid-twentieth century emergence of a technocratic bureaucracy that served the interests of urban elites, Mexico City's environmental history helps us better understand how urban power has been exercised,
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