"...Berg notes that while no single article can capture the essence of all cities, these articles find the representative facets "of cities and use them to explain the current state of various cities, and urbanization as a whole."
The engaging articles include in-depth reporting about Detroit, Braddock (PA), New York, Beijing, Seattle, Brooklyn, Shanghai, and Benton Harbor (MI)."
It’s hard to boil a city down into one article and certainly any aiming to do so would fail. But there are certain elements and situations and facets of cities that, with a little attention, can stand in as representative of these cities from a broader level. The following ten articles find these facets and use them to explain the current state of various cities, and urbanization as a whole. In most cases, cities are the main characters of these stories, and the narrative follows their history, development, struggles and possible futures - in many shades between desolation and triumph. By setting the historical tone and contrasting it against a less vibrant or dramatically hyper-vibrant present, these articles highlight the varied paths cities take, and the remarkably different futures they’re approaching.
These ten articles, presented in the order of their publication (and excluding articles from The Atlantic), represent 2011’s best long-form journalism focused on cities.