Jane Byrne’s Chicago was a city in transition

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The death of Jane Byrne produced the expected spate of stories on her chaotic one-term reign as Chicago’s mayor, her feisty personality and, especially, the snowstorm that swept her into power. But these eulogies missed the real significance of her election — that she benefitted from and symbolized Chicago’s transformation from an industrial to a global city.

OPINION

It’s an instructive lesson in how cities change and mutate, with even the people who live in them unaware of what’s going on until something big — like a blizzard — comes along.

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