On Success, New York

by Leandra Medine
August 18, 2013
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Last week, Anand Ghiridharadas shared an interesting perspective on success in conjunction with New York and the imminent mayoral election.

Opening the short opinion piece with a note on Anthony Weiner’s groin (at this point, it’s just too difficult not to, isn’t it?), Ghiridharadas goes on to ask a series of interesting questions: “Will [New York] remain an incubator of greatness, or become a catchment basin for the already great and their regressing-to-the-mean descendants? Will it continue to be the city to which people think to flee when they’ve boxed up their things in Kansas or Chengdu, tired of their narrow reality? Will it be a place where people can bend their fate?”

Drawing from the experiences of one E.B. White (“Commuters give the city its tidal restlessness, natives give it solidity and continuity, but the settlers give it passion”), Patti Smith and more contemporarily, the hit HBO show stars from Girls, the writer postulates that New York is becoming more and more a city of the quotient providing the solidity and continuity and because of the vast, universal gentrification in the city, may not really function as a hot bed for the contingent that accrues the City’s passion the way it used to.

Hmm. Agree or disgaree? Click over the read the full article here and then come back and tell us what you think.

[Is New York Only for the Successful? via The New York Times.]

REPLIES
  • http://rightternes.com/ RightTernes

    Could New York be for the ambitious? Growing up in various cities across the U.S., New York has always been on my radar as a city I want to try out to either grow a career and live forever or just to say I tried. It can be a hindrance, though, especially in creative fields.

    But the sheer size and financial straits can be a hindrance, especially in creative fields. I’ve heard the argument that New York “takes” a lot of musicians and bands who are determined to “make it,” in the big city, but end up leaving their hometown fan base and taking a part of the community culture with them. It’s not that fans don’t want them to be successful, it’s that they’re integrated into the cultural DNA of a smaller city that treasures its own culture and they don’t want it to leave. What would Detroit, Seattle, L.A., and Nashville be without its culture? Maybe New York is perceived as being a Success Maker, when in reality, you don’t need a city to be successful.