Friday, December 17, 2010

The rise and fall of Urban Sociology (?)

Google has scanned 15 million books originally published from 1800 on. And they have also developed the Google Books Ngram Viewer. It's a tool that charts the usage of any word over time in literature and other books (Google books database). One could irresponsibly use it as a proxy for the popularity of words in literature. And I did!

This chart above shows how often "Urban Sociology" has appeared in the literature (Google database - english literature only) since 1800. It looks to me that the Chicago School have had played an important role in the rising 'popularity' of Urban Sociology*. And it looks that Urban Sociology is not as 'popular' as it used to be....

*obviously, it would be necessary to scrutinize other keywords to conclude this (such as the major researchers in the first Chicago School)

And here are some queries of other keywords of interest:

And my favorites:

Traffic Jam:

Urban sprawl, compact city, smart city, smart growth, compact growth, New Urbanism.

Thanks Vinicius Netto for the tip!