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Environmental Studies
Course Code
ENVS 2200
Stefan Kipfer
Study Guide

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ENVS 2200 Foundations of Urban and Regional Environments
Fall/Winter 2013-14 ---- Course Director: Stefan Kipfer
Study Guide - Mid-term Exam
1. Urban environments today are unsustainable ecologically. This has led observers like
William Rees to suggest that the word “sustainable city is an oxymoron”? What are the
root causes of this lack of urban sustainability? Discuss with the help of various course
-rees – talk about his essay,
-what is sustainability? Self-sufficient as to not deplete future generation resources
-why are cities unsustainable? Because its urban, industrial processes are using many
-eco footprint- explain eco of cities, give an example
-sprawl & consumption creates big eco-footprint
-urban and indigenous settlements
-explain why cities with eco-footprint is unsustainable, and that its an oxymoron.
2. Rodriguez and Feagin point out that urban specialization allows us to understand the
relationships among cities in a global context. Discuss with respect to different types of
This exam is worth 15% of the final grade. It consists of a long essay and 10 short-
answer questions. Read the instructions carefully. Make sure you fully understand the
questions before answering them.
The overall purpose of the exam is to get you to deal with course materials precisely
and creatively.
A. Essay Question. The Essay is worth up to 7.5 marks/ 15.
Choose one of the following three options and write a critical essay. In response to the
question, make a clear, well-organized argument based on your recollection of course
materials (texts, movies and lectures).
All three questions force you to be ‘synthetic’ by using a generous cross-section of texts

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cities (for example imperial cities, colonial cities, and industrial cities). Draw on a range
of relevant course materials.
-critical essay with argument
-refer to specific text
In Toronto has no History, Victoria Freeman’s argument is that….
Define urban specialization: when cities specialize in certain types of economic activities
3 things that determine urban specialization
-geographical location, spatial
-international division of labor
-circuit of capital (flow of money in and out of a city)
[imperial=london city] [ colonial = Algiers city] [ industrial = Manchester city]
-(Amsterdam-financial & ship industry and laiden-textile specialization)
=mercantile capitalism
-need to find new lands to get new resources to expand the empire
-Dutch immigrated to Canada- relationship with indigenous people were of good
commercial relationships for trade (treated them civil and good)
-what were some changed indigenous experience?
British 19CE
-London = financial capital
-Manchester= [industrial city]
-was nicknamed workshop of the world
-the ring with a yonge street pizza slice straight line
-Engels recognized class distinctions in manchester
-(New york & texas): imperial and industrial
-argument: to show important aspect of whatever, and choose the best example for that
-how urban specialization affected the spatial organization of the city
-how different factors create urban specialization
-what that means for global network
-develop the Manchester example and as industrial city and engels writing for spatial
3. Friedrich Engels’ Conditions of the Working Class in England describes class
exploitation and inequality in 19th century England. Social inequality remains a central
feature of urban life in our capitalist world. Discuss with respect to three types of social
inequality, including but not limited to class relations.
-social inequality

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4. Sprawl is a term to describe a particular type of urban development in current urban
regions. However, sprawl emerged from much longer histories of suburbanization.
Discuss with respect to at least two different periods.
-define sprawl: low-density development, auto-dependent, has a mono-function (physical
separation between commercial and residential, as suppose to mixed use)
-2 periods
1) industrial revolution: Manchester (bourgoise)
-picturesque enclaves
-white suburbs, mansions, privately owned
-urbanization city = pollution and poor people working
-1890s, utopian- Garden cities – people started escaping the cities
2) 1950s- post-war
-levittowns – Haydens = sitcom suburbs
-why we call it the sitcom suburbs, Hollywood.
-marketing lifestyle=Consumption
-levittown = commercial company, houses are products that are market, part of the
----capitalist consumption
-full-fledged capitalism- everything is commodified
-land commodification
-mass production and consumption of housing
-ethnoburb, globurbs, technoburbs = give examples
spatial, economic, and global restructuring = global cities
flow of immigration=global cities
2) transnational corps=ethnoburbs-part of sprawl
5. Harry Hiller suggests that we cannot understand urbanization in Canada without
reference to 'colonialism' and 'staples'. Based on Hiller and a range of other relevant
course materials, discuss the key features of Canadian urban history.
-fish and fur, timber
-staples= resource towns
-imperial cities and merchant capitalism – colonial people came and exploited resources
-european empires in North America
-industrial revo. Created urbanization (what new tech? = trains and steam engines)
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