The End of Austin

an exploration of urban identity in the middle of Texas

Austin/Life

‘Room 4.202, Garrison Hall, 12am’ flows like blue wispy clouds against a bright morning sun, across the crumpled post-it note that throbs proudly, full of opportunity and hope, in the … Continue reading

May 21, 2014 · Leave a comment

From KLEEN Wash to Launderette: Signposts of Gentrification or…?

At the corner of Robert T. Martinez, Jr. and Holly Streets, on the wall of KLEEN Wash laundromat, Our Lady of Guadalupe graces her visitors with a loving gaze and … Continue reading

May 21, 2014 · 2 Comments

Austin’s Plaza Saltillo: Place, Practice, and Growth

TEOA enjoys bringing together well-known writers, academics, grad students, and undergrads under one roof. Here UT undergrad Emily Mixon shares a “reflection on the dichotomies between intended and real function … Continue reading

May 21, 2014 · 1 Comment

Austin Within and Beyond the Dome

As improbable as the metaphor might seem, Austin is a glimmering and warming snow globe. A steadily growing number of tourists behold a beautiful kingdom of sun. Austin is a … Continue reading

December 19, 2013 · Leave a comment

Familiarity in (Sub)Urban Form: The Death of Highland Mall?

Where do malls go when they die? They go to deadmalls.com, or, alternatively, Facebook. In 2009, deadmalls.com visitor “Susan” warned that Austin’s Highland Mall was one foot in the grave: … Continue reading

December 19, 2013 · Leave a comment

Hip to the Future

I flew into Austin in 1991 for a musical vacation and spent the rest of the decade there getting a doctorate at UT-Austin in American Studies. The city was strange, … Continue reading

May 18, 2013 · 4 Comments

What’s Being Born?

Mourning what’s dying is child’s play.  Seeing what’s being born is a lot harder and more interesting.  See, for example, Billy Joel’s “Allentown.”  At the same time he was crooning … Continue reading

May 18, 2013 · Leave a comment

The Souls of Austin

TEOA asked Robert Jensen, “How does a rapidly changing city avoid losing its soul?” Here is his response: The question presumes that Austin has a soul. I’m skeptical, for several … Continue reading

May 18, 2013 · Leave a comment

Cities Do Not Have Souls

How does a rapidly changing city avoid losing its soul? First by discarding the idea that it has a soul. Cities do not have souls. They have traditions and histories … Continue reading

May 18, 2013 · 1 Comment

Interview: Imagine Austin

Approved by the city council in summer 2012, “Imagine Austin” is a 30-year plan based on 18,500+ ideas and contributions from Austinites. According to the plan’s authors, “Imagine Austin” provides … Continue reading

May 18, 2013 · Leave a comment

Between the Windshield and the Rearview

  Driving in Austin suggests a metaphor: this town always has one eye on the windshield and one on the rearview. Everywhere you look things are being built, while others … Continue reading

January 10, 2013 · Leave a comment

An End Both Slow and Urgent: Blackness in Austin

Like many grad students, I always expected a fairly definitive end to Austin, a time when I was called upon to fulfill my life’s work after years of honing my … Continue reading

January 10, 2013 · 3 Comments

Interview with Richard Parker, New York Times

Austin-based writer Richard Parker touched a nerve with his New York Times article about how Lance Armstrong’s rise and fall might reflect what could happen to the city where he … Continue reading

January 10, 2013 · Leave a comment

The Mapmaker

Nobody was forced to stay in their neighborhoods. There was no police action or citywide internment. We all just started settling in by our own accord and didn’t notice how … Continue reading

January 10, 2013 · Leave a comment

A Conversation With Thor

About halfway through Thor Harris’s A Post Apocalyptic Tale of Friendship (2010), a mutilated and deformed figure hauls a shark-filled aquarium through a desert populated by wilted flora and equally … Continue reading

January 8, 2013 · 1 Comment

The Ends of Austins

For some Austin ended when the Armadillo became Threadgill’s South. For others, when S X S W started (or when wristbands began to cost three digits). Or when the warehouse … Continue reading

January 8, 2013 · 11 Comments

The End of Austin

What is the End of Austin? It is the beginning of a much-needed conversation about the identity of Austin. Bringing together writers, scholars, and artists from Texas and beyond, TEOA is … Continue reading

January 8, 2013 · 3 Comments

The End of Oz-Town

Just before the Austin housing bubble went POP! and Code Compliance hassled the Cathedral of Junk into becoming a permitted structure, the Cathedral’s creator, Vince Hannemann, brought me by his … Continue reading

January 8, 2013 · Leave a comment

Photos by Caroline Koebel

Angela Davis and Harriet Tubman street art (and the subsequent absence thereof) on Pedernales between 5th and Santa Rosa, Austin, 78702. November 2012. Caroline Koebel is an Austin-based filmmaker and writer … Continue reading

January 8, 2013 · Leave a comment