Infrastructure Wars: Connectivity and the Role of the State

A Review of Jo Guldi’s Roads to Power: Britain Invents the Infrastructure State. Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press, 2012, 297 pages.

Joshua Paetkau

The opening paragraph of Jo Guldi’s Roads to Power: Britain Invents the Infrastructure State plunges the reader into the sinkhole of a 1726 British road large enough to swallow a horse.  This scene is directly contrasted with the wide level highways of 1848 setting the stage for a classic tale of human ingenuity, progress and national unity. It is not to be. Guldi instead depicts a vivid dialectical landscape, narrating the rise and demise of infrastructure, and the many battles between, with far-reaching and incisive clarity. Continue reading

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