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Books Inc. Berkeley feat. author Gabrielle Bendiner-Viani

September 25 @ 6:00 pm 7:30 pm

An expressive book of prose and photographs that reveals the powerful ways our everyday places support our shared belonging.

Where would you take someone on a guided tour of your neighborhood? In The Cities We Need, photographer and urbanist Gabrielle Bendiner-Viani introduces us to the complex, political, and eminently personable stories of residents who answered this question in Brooklyn, New York, and Oakland, California. Their universal stories and Bendiner-Viani’s evocative images illuminate what’s at stake in our everyday places—from diners to churches to donut shops. In this culmination of two decades of research and art practice, Bendiner-Viani intertwines the personal, historical, and photographic to present us with placework, the way that unassuming places foster a sense of belonging and, in fact, do the essential work of helping us become communities.

In this unique book, Bendiner-Viani makes visible how seemingly unimportant places can lay the foundation for a functional interconnected society, so necessary for both public health and social justice. The Cities We Need explores both what we gain in these spaces and what we risk losing as they are threatened by gentrification, large-scale development, and most recently the COVID-19 pandemic. Ultimately, Bendiner-Viani shows us how to understand ourselves as part of a shared society, with a shared fate; she shows us that everyday places can be the spaces of liberation in which we can build the cities we need.


Books Inc.

1491 Shattuck Ave
Berkeley, California 94710 United States
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