The first paragraph of the book reminds me of the long overdue Reform in Education that has recently started come about. When Jacobs wrote this book, there were city planning practices that ran counter to well-intentioned goals – the same could be said for education a few decades ago. Her solution, detailed in this book, is a more dynamic approach to city planning that is in direct opposition with long standing traditions in the field. And she makes this clear immediately.
This book is an attack on current city planning and rebuilding. It is also, and mostly, an attempt to introduce new principles of city planning and rebuilding, different and even opposite from those now taught…It is an attack, rather, on the principles and aims that have shaped modern, orthodox city planning and rebuilding. (p3)
I suspect this all-out attack on the underlying principles of a subject area comes up in many fields of practice, after they lay stagnant for too long and the affords of technology pass them by, standing still. I notice the idea a bit later in the introduction, as well, when Jacobs brings up the medical field, so long dominated by the ideas of Galen and static practice.