Vexed Village: An Architect's Daily Commute Inspires Sweeping Critique of City

Twenty Minutes in Manhattan
by Michael Sorkin
University of Chicago Press, 272 pages, $27

Although it sounds like a contradiction in terms, Michael Sorkin has long been the bad boy of architectural criticism. As the house critic for The Village Voice in the 1980s, Sorkin mounted an unrelenting war on all things postmodern, wielding a brutal—and brutally fun—pen against Philip Johnson’s AT&T Headquarters (“The Seagram Building with ears” ), Tom Wolfe’s From Bauhaus...

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