I’ve been watching Anthony Bourdain’s new series. He’s been to Detroit before, with Zamir, but not like this.
I’ve seen the apocalypse and it is Detroit. I’ve been to Michigan, but not Detroit. I’ve seen the images though. I remember as a young kid, the news images of the 1967 riots. I read how Detroit in 1950 was the fourth largest city in the country. The Arsenal of Democracy in World War II. Manufacturing was going strong.
Back in the ’80’s, Zeev Chafets, an Israeli journalist, who grew up in nearby Pontiac, Michigan wrote a book, called Devils Night and Other Tales of Detroit. Things were already bad then. I wonder if he wrote the book now what he would say.
Anthony Bourdain, climbed in broken down factories, past, overgrown houses, that had once been for the wealthy, and areas within city limits, where people are farming again.
With television and the Internet, we notice things more. When the Roman Empire collapsed, it took Edward Gibbon’s long multi volume series to tell the tale. Decline was slow.
With Detroit, there are people old enough to remember its glory years. You can see newsreels to that effect.
I have Tom Hanks’ series about the Sixties on CNN. Maybe the next documentary will be people talking about Detroit, rise fall and popular future.