Saturday, December 02, 2006


I've got to love any article that begins like this:

"There’s a case to be made that the single most intellectually and politically influential neighborhood in the United States is Chicago’s Hyde Park."

Whee!!! Thank you, Christopher Hayes, of "In These Times." Hayes continues, giving a mostly fair description of the neighborhood:

"Integrated, affluent and quiet, the 1.6 square-mile enclave on the city’s south side is like a tiny company town, where the company happens to be the august, gothic, eminently serious University of Chicago. Students at the U. of C. sell T-shirts that read “Where Fun Goes To Die,” and the same could be said of the neighborhood, which until very recently had a bookstore-to-bar ratio of 5:2."

It turns out, alas, that what makes Hyde Park influential isn't the many, remarkably perceptive French major/blogger/Maroon columnists, but in fact the pro-market school of economics Chicago is known for. The Chicago School. The article comes out against this worldview. So be it. I'm just thrilled to bits by the first sentence.