World_Urban_Systems - World Urban Systems 2 Lecture Notes 2...

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World Urban Systems 2 Lecture Notes 2
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Cities are comparatively recent social inventions, having existed 7,000 to 10,000 years. Their existence encompasses the totality of the period we label “civilization.” The very term civilization and civilized comes from the Latin “civis” or “civitas” which refers to citizens living in a city.
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“Civitas” (roman) referred to the political and moral nature of community. The term “urbs” from which we get urban, referred more to the “built form of the city.” Just over 200 years ago in 1800, the population of the world was still 97 percent rural.
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In 1900, the world was still 86 percent rural. A hundred years ago (1900) the proportion of the world’s population living in cities of 100,000 or more was only 5.5 percent. In 1900, only 13.6 percent lived in places of 5,000 or more. Today for the first time we live in a world where urban residents outnumber rural.
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Not until 1920 did half the population of the U.S. reside in urban places. Not until 1931 was this true in Canada. In 1900, only 12 cities had over 1 million.
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World_Urban_Systems - World Urban Systems 2 Lecture Notes 2...

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