Podcast: Cats in a bag

By Jonn Elledge

This week, I am sorry to tell you, we aren’t actually talking about cats. (Boo.) What we are talking about is the fraught matters of borders and boundaries, identity and institutions – whether the city is one entity or many, and who it is who gets to decide.

Barbara and I begin by discussing one of our (my) favourite questions: where does London end? Or Southampton? Or New York, Shanghai or Paris, come to that? (For those who’d like to read up, here’s my seminal work on the topic: What is a city, anyway?)

These questions aren’t just of interest to map nerds: they have a real impact on how cities relate to their suburbs, and the authorities within them relate to each other. So Tim Fendley from Applied Wayfinding, who you might remember from episode 3, pops in to tell us about his adventures trying to get the various transport bodies to work together in Toronto.

Next, our occasional western hemisphere correspondent Drew Reed tells us about his city. Los Angeles was made by the car – but its long demolished streetcar network might yet save it from snarl ups. (Here’s the article he wrote on the topic for us a while back.)

And finally, given our topic, what else could we choose as our map of the week? Here, once again, is Paris superimposed on London.


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