When I originally sent David the link to my essay, Star Wars: A New Heap I knew he was an unlikely fan of my ideas about Star Wars. I understood what he disliked about the film's plot and the franchises influence on the world of scifi publishing. In no way, shape, or form, did I think I would change David's judgment of the movie (or even wanted to). But because he counts himself a contrarian, I hoped he would enjoy the spirit of my project. I was ecstatic when he replied to my email and have enjoyed the polite sparing of our sporadic correspondence ever since. The subject of our sparing hasn't been Star Wars, however, its been modernity and Modernism. David has made it very clear on a number of occasions that he believed that both art and architecture (but mostly architecture) had gone off the rail some time ago, and has never recovered:
Not the scientists and engineers and science fiction authors, who kept faith with Modernism as a central force for the enlightenment, but by the very communities that you most associate with "Modernism".... the artists and architects, who betrayed the movement absolutely, despicably and almost mortally, at the very level of personality. By preening and flouncing and calling themselves wizard-guru-masters, everyone from Le Corbusier to Wright to Warhol gave in to the old temptations and turned Modernist art and architecture away from the enlightenment's most fundamental notion -- modesty and accountability.
In 1853, after seeing London, a city transformed by the Industrial Revolution, which offered large public parks and a complete sewer system, the new President of the Second Republic (and soon to be its Emperor) Napoléon III decided to modernize Paris. He chose Georges Eugène Haussmann, who using the powers of the authoritarian regime, built a modern underground network of sewers and freshwater aqueducts, but more famously cut a new network of wide Boulevards through the mediaeval core of Paris intended to make the city easier for authorities to control.