Can a city have a soul? And if so, is it something solid and fixed for as long as the city survives, putting its stamp on each new generation? Or is the soul of the city a much more ephemeral thing, a transient spirit of the moment, a metaphorical summation of the prevailing sentiments of its citizens? In this episode, Joseph P. Viteritti, the Thomas Hunter Professor of Public Policy and Chair of the Urban Policy and Planning Department at Hunter College takes me through his search for what he hopes is the enduring soul of New York, a progressive vision of a city that is committed to lifting up the least fortunate of its residents.

Professor Viteritti’s webpage

Writings discussed:

“Searching for the Soul of New York: Part 1, Literature”

“Searching for the Soul of New York: Part II, Politics and Leadership”

The Pragmatist: Bill de Blasio’s Quest to Save the Soul of New York

Invisible Cities (by Italo Calvino)