Saturday, February 22, 2020 10:00 am - 12:15 pm
Sam Roberts / New York University / New York Times
As New York celebrates its four hundredth birthday, this unique class tells the story of the city through bricks, glass, wood, and mortar, revealing why and how it evolved into the nation’s biggest and most influential city.
From nearly seven hundred thousand buildings, Sam Roberts selects fifteen that have been the most emblematic of the city’s economic, social, and political evolution. He describes not only the famous New York buildings and how they came to be, but also their enduring impact on the city and its people, and how the consequences of the construction often reverberate around the world.
A few structures, such as the Empire State Building, are architectural icons of New York City. However, students will also be guided beyond the familiar with intriguing stories of the personalities and exploits behind the unrivaled skyscraper’s construction. Some stretch the definition of buildings, to include the city’s oldest bridge and the landmark Coney Island Boardwalk. Others offer surprises: where the United Nations General Assembly first met; a hidden hub of global internet traffic; a nondescript factory that produced billions of dollars of currency in the poorest neighborhood in the country; and the buildings that triggered the Depression and launched the New Deal.
For more lectures about US History and New York check out Sam Roberts lectures in our video library. Sign up for One Day University Membership today for unlimited access to hundreds of talks and lectures including ‘15 Famous Building in New York City ’ and so much more!
Sam Roberts is an NYU Adjunct Professor, and has written for The New York Times since 1983. He is also the host of the NY1 show The New York Times Close Up and the author of “A History of New York in 101 Objects”.