What is the role of the neighbourhood in our understanding of community and how has this role changed over the last century? Talja Blokland seeks to answer this question in this careful ethnographic study of the changing nature of social relationships and urban communities. This outstanding and thoughtful book interweaves two rather different but parallel lines of inquiry: a detailed study of the history and current social life of an inner city neighbourhood in Rotterdam, and a general reflection on the changing character of social ties in urban areas.The book is organized around broad conceptual issues in a way that presents the empirical material within a framework that is relevant for teaching purposes. Blokland addresses key issues of community and identity and draws on a wide range of literature in urban sociology. Urban Bonds is set to become a classic in its field and will be widely used in courses on urban sociology, human geography, and ethnicity.