The End of Austin

an exploration of urban identity in the middle of Texas

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Of course the discomfort did not emerge all of a sudden: it built up inside me, like always, without a clear definition. Their presence puzzled me, it clouded me—that’s the … Continue reading

September 28, 2021 · Leave a comment

Editorial Comment

I am incredibly excited to be the guest editor for this edition of the End of Austin and I would like to thank all those who contributed. My proposal to … Continue reading

November 21, 2020 · Leave a comment

Reclaiming Dunbar: Black History, Anti-Gentrification, and Community-Engaged Research in San Marcos, Texas

As the gentrification of East Austin and the displacement of its longtime African-American and Latinx communities become increasingly more evident, widely known, and contentious, a similar story is unfolding just … Continue reading

November 21, 2020 · Leave a comment

Selection from Darwin Hamilton’s 25 Years Later

VS. EMINENT DOMAIN I have always been fond of great orators, civil rights activist and leaders’ powerful speeches and eloquent interviews from the past like U.S. Congressman Adam Clayton Powel … Continue reading

November 21, 2020 · Leave a comment

The Slacker Colonialist and the Gentrification of Austin

Thirty Years of Gentrification in Austin The story of gentrification in Austin is as remarkable as it is tragic. Every day stories emerge about the torrential loss of significant cultural … Continue reading

November 21, 2020 · 1 Comment

Barton’s Slaves

In June 2018, Austin’s Chief Equity Officer released a report calling for the renaming of certain place names, or toponyms, in Austin, especially those that commemorate the Confederacy. The report … Continue reading

November 21, 2020 · Leave a comment

The Open City

Nota bene: The following paragraphs describe “open cities,” as compared to “closed cities.” I developed this distinction based on a comparative analysis of a number of cities.  Austin is an “open … Continue reading

November 21, 2020 · Leave a comment

A Wrench in the Wheel

Prescript: This entry is based on a paper written in 2011 by Drs. Lauren Martin and Eliot Tretter, both geographers interested in alternative productions of space. We authored the essay before … Continue reading

November 21, 2020 · Leave a comment

Who was Robert Mueller? Reflections on History, Segregation, and Place Names

A few weeks ago someone sent a query to my neighborhood’s listserv asking whether the Mueller neighborhood should be pronounced “Mew-ler” or “Miller.” Several people wrote back, explaining that the … Continue reading

November 21, 2020 · 5 Comments

Eliot Tretter Interviews Darwin Hamilton, author of 25 Years Later, a short autobiography about his life in Austin

Eliot Tretter: Most of the books about Austin are written by people that are considered white. Still there is a large number of books, especially recently, which have covered of … Continue reading

November 21, 2020 · Leave a comment

The Gold Dollar Building and Black Erasure

Stand at the southeast corner of 24th Street and San Gabriel in the West Campus neighborhood of Austin, Texas, and look across the street. The four buildings in front of … Continue reading

November 21, 2020 · Leave a comment

Going Hungry on Campus

“I stole groceries today bc I don’t’ have a lot of money and I got caught and now I have a class b misdemeanor and court in three weeks. I … Continue reading

November 21, 2020 · Leave a comment

Sheltering in a Weird Place: Notes from Quarantined Austin

What are you seeing, thinking, feeling during this time of quarantine? To understand how we are muddling through an unprecedented moment in our city’s history, I sought out short bits … Continue reading

April 14, 2020 · 2 Comments

Pandemic Photos

dear Austin friends: would you like to share a photo about living in Austin during pandemic lockdown? What are you seeing during this time of quarantine? Send your images to … Continue reading

April 5, 2020 · Leave a comment

The End of Barton Creek?

I begin with a caveat. This abbreviated portfolio of “wildlife” photographs from the seventies does not proclaim or prove THE END OF AUSTIN so much as it poses a question. … Continue reading

July 20, 2016 · 1 Comment

Hipster Hate and the Sabotage of Real Social Commentary

We hate hipsters don’t we? It’s probably their detached air of superiority that irks us most, but in reality, we hate it all. We detest star-spangled Toms, imperial mustaches, and … Continue reading

May 24, 2016 · 2 Comments

Documenting Austin with Matt Black

The celebrated documentary photographer Matt Black ran a weeklong photography workshop in Austin during May 2016. A collaboration between Magnum Photos and the Harry Ransom Center (and organized by the HRC Academic … Continue reading

May 24, 2016 · Leave a comment

“The difference between a cocktail waitress and a stripper? Two weeks”

“There’s a joke,” Raven told me during our first meeting back in September 2012. “What’s the difference between a cocktail waitress and a stripper? Two weeks.” She laughed loudly and … Continue reading

May 24, 2016 · Leave a comment

Shadows of a Sunbelt City: An Excerpt

In 2013, popular Texas Monthly magazine published a collection of commentaries on Texas’s major cities, and two of them were about Austin. One, written by John Spong (a Texas Monthly … Continue reading

May 24, 2016 · Leave a comment
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