Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Americans in Paris: Irwin Shaw

Paris is not a city of heights. Its architects, out of respect for man, have made certain that man is not dwarfed by his works here. It is a city built to human scale, so that no man should feel pygmied here. Parisians are devoted to their sky and have passed a set of complicated laws designed to keep the height of buildings at a modest level, so that the sky, soft, streaked, gentle, beloved to painters, can be a constant intimate presence above the rooftops and treetops.

From Remembrance of Things Past in Americans in Paris: A Literary Anthology, Adam Gopnik, editor (New York: The Library of America, 2004), p. 486.


Paris Paul said...

I know it's a touchy subject, but when I first arrived in Paris, I was disappointed it wasn't taller, like New York or Chicago. After 20 years, I'm making my peace with this, however, and head over to La Défense when I feel the urge.

Sweet Freak said...

I adore the uniformity of Paris. And I hate feeling "pygmied"!

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