What Is The Bronx, Anyway?

Benjamin Wallace-Wells asks the question, adding: ‘Interest in the place has been escalating, just a bit. Earlier this year, Netflix announced that Baz Luhrmann will direct a forthcoming drama series about New York in the 1970s whose central story line will involve the early days of hip-hop in the Bronx. This is both a ludicrous project to give to Luhrmann and an ingenious one, early hip-hop being party music and there being no director so vigorous in his staging of parties than Baz Luhrmann. The break dancing is going to look great, and the graffiti too. But the project’s bound to spark some interest in the Bronx’s curious trajectory, and on that count I’m hopeful, because I do think that there is something that separates the Bronx out from the rest of the city’s Chuck Ramkissoon belt, the great immigrant menagerie. It has to do with the Bronx’s comfort in its dependent status, its namelessness, and with its stubborn culture of aspiration.’

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