Irvine as America's Brasilia?

Rohit Khare (
Fri, 19 Nov 1999 16:30:24 -0800

From this week's New Yorker:

"Suckling spent a couple of years in Missoula, where he supported
himself by working for a caterer and got involved with the radical
wing of the environmental movement. He then won a fellowship to the
University of California at Irvine to study critical theory -- one of
the most abstract, daring, and recondite fields in academe, made much
fun of by outsiders for its impenetrably dense and jargony mode of
discourse, but, for the participants, the humanities' equivalent of
quantum physics. For Suckling, the move was a big disaster. The
city of Irvine and U.C.-Irvine are the closest thing the United
States has to Brasilia, having been constructed on empty ranchland in
the mid-sixties, according to a master plan. "I felt I'd arrived in
Descartes-land," Suckling says, and he left after a day and enrolled
at the State University of New York at Stony Brook. (Yes, Long Island
suburbia seems organic compared with Irvine.)"

No comment, except to note that the sentence describing critical
theory is amusingly reflexive :-)

Oh, Suckling is the 'leader' of the Center for Biodiversity. for more info on "Protecting and
restoring natural ecosystems and imperiled species through science,
education, policy, and environmental law."

Rohit Khare