- Paperback: 320 pages
- Publisher: Verso Books; Reprint edition (14 July 2014)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1781687765
- ISBN-13: 978-1781687765
- Product Dimensions: 13 x 1.8 x 19.8 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 326,855 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
The View from the Train: Cities and Other Landscapes Paperback – 14 Jul 2014
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“Patrick Keiller’s films (including London and Robinson in Space) are some of the most beautiful and evocative images of contemporary urban environments we have; in this collection of lucid and eloquent essays he shows us the theoretical rigour that lies behind his practice. Essential reading for urbanists, cineastes, psychogeographers – and indeed anyone who either lives in cities, or cares about them; so: everyone.”
– Will Self
“Keiller is Britain’s most observant and provocative film-maker around the subject of cities and the landscape. In these wonderful essays, he explores the political and cultural forces behind how the UK looks.”
– Edwin Heathcote, Financial Times Books of the Year
“An enigmatic, intermittently brilliant collection of essays about the built landscape of Britain and how it has changed in the last thirty years.”
– Andy Beckett, Guardian
“Perceptive, educated, un-obvious musings on place and inhabitation.”
– Rowan Moore, Observer Books of the Year
“Our most original geographical and political thinker.”
– Owen Hatherley, author of A New Kind of Bleak
“The View from the Train often delights with its sly, impish wit and observation.”
– Ian Thomson, Independent
“An essayist of stylish rigour.”
– Brian Dillon, author of In the Dark Room
About the Author
Patrick Keiller's films include the celebrated London (1994), Robinson in Space (1997), The Dilapidated Dwelling (2000), and Robinson in Ruins (2010). He has devised large-scale installations including Londres, Bombay (Le Fresnoy, Tourcoing, 2006) and The Robinson Institute (Tate Britain, London, 2012), the latter accompanied by a book The Possibility of Life's Survival on the Planet. He was a Research Fellow at the Royal College of Art, London (200211), and has taught in schools of art and architecture since 1974.
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Top Customer Reviews
This is a selection of essays, and is something of a mixed bag. I thought that some were really excellent, such as those on ports or Cedric Price, which easily justified the purchase price for me. However there was a degree of repetition, and at times it felt like you were reading a slightly obsessive phd dissertation on Walter Benjamin.
Overall an enjoyable and illuminating read, though a dry at points.
I admire the combination of erudition and eccentricity and a very English Surrealism (with one eye firmly fixed on the Continent). His work is also, this must be stressed, very funny, with often unexpected juxtapositions, insights and cultural references piling up to brilliant and mad effect.
The good news is that those facets of his work are all present and correct this wonderful collection of his writings from the last few decades. Taking in cinema, architecture, Surrealism, time, space and just about everything else, it adds up to a fascinating glimpse into Keiller's mind - arch, witty and very cultured.
London and Robinson in Space [DVD]Robinson in Ruins [DVD & Blu-ray]The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gentleman (Oxford World's Classics)The Early Films of Peter Greenaway 1  [DVD]
Now I have to get Robinson in Space..