Cities have always been cruel, of course. They’ve nearly always served and been run by elites; corruption is the mortar that held many of them together. But until recently, there was room for more complexity, more diversity, more unregulated and unpatrolled turbulence in them. There are cities around the world, from Lima to Kathmandu, where this is still true, and perhaps the great cultures and movements of the future will come from there, but the North American and European cities that are becoming elite strongholds are pushing out diversity, complexity, cultural production, and dissent. They are becoming what is worst about the suburbs.

Rebecca Solnit, “Coming Apart”