The city is a place where the self is confronted most brutally with the other, and where it is also most detached from it. The city is history, and it is an Orwellian “double think” where history is abolished quickly and without notation. In the city, “time challenges time, time clashes with time: habits and values carry over beyond the living group, streaking with different strata of time the character of any single generation. Layer upon layer, past times preserve themselves in the city until life itself is finally threatened with suffocation.

Lewis Mumford, The Culture of Cities (1938)