David Simon’s American City

    Project Details


    David Simon’s America is an urban one. From a thematization of deindustrialization in the second season of The Wire, to a portrayal of segregated housing in Show Me a Hero, to the challenges facing New Orleans in the wake of Hurricane Katrina in Treme and finally the examination of prostitution, pornography, and urban trials of 1970s inner-city New York in The Deuce, Simon’s work has almost consistently focused on the challenges of the American metropolis, focusing on the city both as a tangible reality and a as metaphor for the interconnected socio-political reality that these series grapple with. These series examine the state of the contemporary American city and the problems it faces.
    In the intersection between popular media and American culture and politics, this dissertation aims to examine how Simon’s serials engage in discussions about the constitution and future of the American city. In Simon’s own words “The Wire is dissent” and his series consistently speak to realities that are otherwise often ignored in much popular culture in the US. How often does one see a series taking a key interest in public housing and the historical roots of de facto segregated cities like Show Me a Hero? This dissertation aims at reading Simon’s series as a collected whole and examines how these series together form distinct interventions in public discourses in the US.
    Effective start/end date01/12/201515/02/2019


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