Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Natalie Hopkinson: In Bloomingdale, Faces of Gentrification

See this TBD item from Bloomingdale resident Natalie Hopkinson: .

Big Bear Cafe, the Bloomingdale Farmers' Market, Field to City and the Florida Avenue Park (across the street from Big Bear) are all mentioned.

Glad that I don't own a pork pie hat.

What do you think?

(Photo above titled "HIpster Parade" courtesy of Matthew Beck from Natalie Hopkinson).


  1. It's a terrible "article" that doesn't even recognize that LeDroit Park and Bloomingdale are distinct neighborhoods.

  2. "In a 2009 piece for The Root, Natalie Hopkinson drew lines between the neighborhood and the world of Spike Lee's Do the Right Thing." Is Natalie Hopkinson's assessment a bit off or spot on ?

  3. She wrote: "I rarely see an African American face enjoying the coffee culture..."

    Really? I have a completely different view.

    But it appears that it was not Natalie Hopkinson that wrote that piece, nor did she write the snarky fit-into-the-simple-gentrification-narrative captions on the photos.

    Whoever wrote that piece cherrypicked some passages to create this obnoxious, oversimplified picture.

  4. IMGoph,
    it really depends on how you define a neighborhood. the hard fast definitions that are used a lot these days don't suit everyone's way of thinking or sense of place. i know people that grew up here that called it Ledroit. some people call it eckington. the subdivisions were laid out a 100 years ago, but the reality is that we are neighbors. isn't that what a neighborhood is, a place of neighbors?

  5. Sean: Of course neighborhoods in DC aren't cut-and-dried, but there's a historic district that makes up the core of LeDroit Park. There's a specific history there, and it's unique from Bloomingdale. It's not like a bunch of white people showed up and invented the name and created a new neighborhood in the last few years. The short-shrift treatment that photo essay gives the topic could lead one to believe that.

    I dislike the silly treatment given to what can be a pretty serious topic - one worth having a conversation about. It's especially sad seeing on TBD, a project that had such promise a year ago, turn into this. They were going to do quality journalism, not just troll for page hits. Oh well...

  6. The article in The Root is well written and very thoughtful. It includes some really interesting reflections on the 20 year anniversary of Do the Right Thing. That reductive prose that TBD published has little to do with the actual article.

  7. One of the photos has a graffiti tag in it that has the letters ANG surrounded by a circle. This same tag appeared next to my house two days ago. Does anyone know what the tag indiciates -- that is, is it a person, or gang-related, both, or...

  8. Just three words on the photo show and linked articles: shit, shit, shit.

  9. What an obnoxious article!! It really bothers me when people try to boil down the changes our neighborhoods are going through into this kind of drivel. We are facing important issues in our communities that we all must work together to address. It is not about porkpie hats and yoga studios. The challenge for all of our community leaders is how do we maintain the textured fabric of our community when so many new people are moving in and so many long-time neighbors are struggling to stay.

    Speaking of which, I encourge all LeDroit Park residents to come out to the next Civic Association meeting (Tuesday, May 24) and vote on the next set of officers.

    VP, Ledroit Park Civic Association