A Defense Of “Ruin Porn”

Sep 6 2011 @ 8:34am

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Citing the 237,500 people who deserted Detroit in the last decade, Willy Staley argues that photos of the city's ruins are a document of "the actual illness that plagues the city—a lack of jobs, commerce, safety, and now, people":

The city is packing it in by tearing down thousands of vestiges of its old self, its gangrenous appendages that need to be amputated. It has finally come to terms with what it has become. All that our college-educated neophyte boosters have to offer us is denial of this diagnosis, and denial prevents treatment. Those who deny Detroit’s illness benefit from it; and they have created a sexy counterargument (even using the word porn!) that dismisses all documentation of Detroit’s decline out of hand, claiming the moral high ground while doing so.

(Photo by Flickr user Thomas Hawk)