Peter Clark

in The Oxford Handbook of Cities in World History

Published in print February 2013 | ISBN: 9780199589531
Published online April 2013 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks in History


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This book presents a detailed analysis of the evolution of major urban systems in the world from early times to the present. It presents case studies of the main trends in the principal urban systems and offers a comparative analysis of some key variables — power, population and migration, representations, environment, commercial networking, and so on — that help to explicate, distinguish, and interconnect those systems and networks. Developments and processes are examined over three broad periods: the early era from the origins of cities to around 600 ce, the pre-modern era up to the nineteenth century, and the modern and contemporary period, from the nineteenth century to the present time. This introductory article first discusses the value and problems of a comparative approach to the history of cities and a number of the core themes and questions that need to be explored. It then presents a schematic overview of the main trends in urban development from early times to the present.

Keywords: urban systems; history; cities; urban development

Article.  11778 words. 

Subjects: History ; World History

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