This first full-scale history of the development of the American suburb examines how “the good life” in America came to be equated with the a home of one’s own . Crabgrass Frontier is the first book to trace the growth of suburbs in America from their origins in the ‘s–in Brooklyn Heights opposite Manhattan–until the. JOHN O’LOUGHLIN. CRABGRASS FRONTIER: The Suburbanization of the United States. By. KENNETH T. JACKSON. x and pp.; maps, diagrs., ills., index.

Author: Shaktilmaran Gazragore
Country: Austria
Language: English (Spanish)
Genre: Photos
Published (Last): 7 February 2015
Pages: 376
PDF File Size: 15.13 Mb
ePub File Size: 13.70 Mb
ISBN: 166-5-12591-619-1
Downloads: 34637
Price: Free* [*Free Regsitration Required]
Uploader: Mezizragore

Additionally, the traditional European city had statex forms of economic segregation as American cities–though the segregation was topographically in reverse, with the poor being shunned to the perimeter in the European model, and to the core in the American model. He does not do so to an overbearing degree, and the book does not turn into a screed or polemic. It became easier for towns to incorporate, and once they did many began to resist being annexed by the cities they were ostensibly tied to.

Since William Levitt erected his first houses outside Paris in[25] the European landscape has become littered with all the trappings of suburban America. Anyway, this is definitely a good one. Easily another classic if you are looking to know more about twentieth century US cultural history. It would be hard, even if it should not be singled cabgrass as the great evil, to avoid the tremoundous impact of the car in this picture.

Jackson does a good suburbanizatioon of getting the reader to the point in the s, right after many older American cities had essentially bottomed out, and some had begun to recover in some ways gentrification.

It is a thoughtful analysis of crabgraes of social movement without any polemic. Aug 09, John Newton rated it really liked it Shelves: If you are like me, you will find yourself skimming quite a few sections, but you will still be left with a better understanding of how the suburban landscape came to be and why it is lacking in other countries.

These social scientists suggest that the historical processes of suburbanization and decentralization are instances of white privilege that have contributed to contemporary patterns of environmental racism. Anyway, I really enjoyed this one. The author has managed to d This book is a fascinating social history of America covering years – s to s.

Jackson examined the New Deal ‘s contributions to public housing and concludes that “the result, if not the intent, of the public housing program of the United States was to segregate the races, to concentrate the disadvantaged in inner cities, and to reinforce the image of suburbia as a place of refuge for the problems of race, crime, and poverty.


Crabgrass Frontier – Kenneth T. Jackson – Oxford University Press

After that the author talks about the transportation revolution and the erosion of the walking city of high densities 2and the vision of house and yard that encouraged early developers of the peripheries of cities 3. At the same time, home loan and insurance policies favored the suburbs heavily, stifling attempts by those in the city to improve or protect their buildings.

Where he does allow for some personal opinion in the end portionshe argues that it is not about creating an us against them mentality. While he does cite some connections to English antecedents, he clearly sees its development in the United States as being a singularly American feature. Mar 25, Gregory Feehan rated it really liked it. Jackson Limited preview – He argues that this is not a new phenomena, but goes back to the nineteenth century.

We still love to shutter into our homes, maybe more so now that modern conveniences make leaving kf necessary. From ancient times, the city’s primary function was as a central meeting place to conduct business. For him, the net result of Federal Government housing policy was the concentration of the poor in the cities, while middle class, usually white individuals flocked to the suburbs, which were touted as refuges from the crime and moral decay of American cities.

New transportation tech made cities grow, and then enabled commutes to the cities, so that separate municipalities — the suburbs we know today — formed. Like the thhe, one has to seed the lawn of history and then allow others to plant the garden with unique items.

They primarily argue that as incomes rise, most people want the range and choice offered by automobiles. In explaining how American suburbanization came to be crabgrads how it diverged so sharply from the rest of the world, he unnited that a combination of factors came together to create what we know today: The author has managed to distill a huge amount of research as evidenced by the pages and pages of references into an easy to read and clearly articulated social history.

Jacksons focus is on America, but along the way tne provides a window of comparison to the Countries that sit on the otherside of the great pond.

Despite the breadth of coverage, however, Crabgrass Frontier is an overall unsatisfying read. Secondly, Crabgrass Frontier is already showing its age, both in its conclusions and its scholarship. Considered a foundational book in the study of the US suburbs, it really lays out This is a book I read for dissertation research.


Crabgrass Frontier: The Suburbanization of the United States

In in newly rebuilt Chicagoa new type of building appeared, ‘ balloon frame ,’ that “would absorb most of the population growth of the United States over the next one hundred and fifty years”.

Given the massive growth of affordable dwellings accessible by the highway and train, families flocked to planned towns such as Levittown where all the details such as schools and public works were already in place so that builders could erect as many as thirty homes a day to meet demand This history of the suburb is valuable in so many ways, but I found the organization of the book with the many sub-headings made it seem like reading the text for a documentary and I kept hearing the accompanying voice of a narrator in my head.

After the Second World War, the need for housing presented another problem for the federal government and construction industry also responded by building up suburban areas rather than revitalizing urban areas. I could have done with less of that, but so many of the tidbits a In understanding how on earth American cities developed as they did, there is probably no better place to start than this book.

In fact, it began long before its emergence on the modern landscape. Jackson is working at a time when social history and American Studies were dueling for the hand of new approaches to the past and I believe that this work is using urban history to read the suburbs. Jackon begins detached and eventually waxes passionate as the suburbs’ success prove to be at the expense of the cities, but he’s never caustic. Built on cheap land, connected by cheap transport, and occupied by cheap buildings, Jackson believes contemporary sprawl to be not worth much in comparison to the city, and points to trends in the s which might signal a turning point.

Crabgrass Frontier is chalk full of information on the social, political and personal development of suburb culture. By grading certain areas based on “desirability” i. While Jackson couldn’t know exactly what would happen over the last quarter century he did suggest that the s probably was the peak of suburbanisation and that it would slowly start to reverse.

Apr 14, Michelle rated it it was amazing. In conclusion, Jackson offers a controversial prediction: