Effects of Urbanization

Topics: Sociology, Urban area, City Pages: 5 (1004 words) Published: May 5, 2013
Essay on Effects of Urbanization | |
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| |Urbanization is the process by which a large number of people over time | | |become concentrated in cities. However, cities, as permanent settlements | | |where heterogeneous groups of people live, have existed since time | | |immemorial. The existence of cities is extensively interrelated to the | | |expansion of an efficient agricultural system and technology that makes | | |possible surplus products beyond the immediate requirements of survival. This| | |condition, together with the existence of complex social organization and | | |favorable geographical environment, plays a critical role in the continued | | |existence of cities. Yet due to, among other things, inadequate technology | | |and agricultural and transportation systems, premodern cities were relatively| | |undersized and few in number compared to modern cities. Hence, the true | | |development of urbanization is a recent phenomenon. Just 200 years ago, the | | |number of people living in urban areas throughout the world was under 4 | | |percent. Currently, that number is 47 percent; soon it will hit the 50 | | |percent mark. By the year 2025, demographers predict that two thirds of the | | |world's population will live in metropolitan areas. | | |The industrial revolution made a marked difference in the development of | | |modern cities. The revolution played an important role in drawing people to | | |cities, where diverse nonagricultural occupations were available. Most | | |importantly, however, the industrial revolution laid the infrastructural | | |basis for the expansion of communication between distant areas and the | | |transportation of people and resources from one place to another. Hence, | | |preindustrial cities and modern cities were dissimilar from one another not | | |only quantitatively but also qualitatively. Economically modern cities | | |allowed elaborate specialization together with an open system in which | | |achievement rather than ascription played an important role in social | | |mobility. | | |Politically, modern cities became social spaces wherein the notion of | | |citizenship, replacing premodern subject hood, found full-fledged expression.| | |Culturally, modern cities not only served as centers of cultural intermixing | | |but acted as places wherein diverse subcultures flourished. These processes | |...
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