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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.

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Rather, suburbanization arrived as a result of two factors: More than 60, Frenchmen have poured out of Paris to gape at Levitt’s recently opened American-style subdivision in suburban Le Mesnil-Saint-Denis pop. Oxford University Press Amazon.

Crabgrass Frontier: The Suburbanization of the United States by Kenneth T. Jackson

The building of an efficient network of roads, highways and superhighways, and the underwriting of mortgages for suburban one-family homes, had an enormous influence on the pace of suburbanization. As the twentieth century progressed, suburbanization emerged in response to unjted growing problems that confronted the urban environment.

In explaining how American suburbanization came to be and how it diverged so sharply from the rest of the world, frkntier shows that a combination of factors came together to create what we know today: As Americans begin to rebuild their cities and the civilization which they foster, this look back at what caused their disintegration will prove most helpful.

But all in all it is definitely worth the read. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. He treats communities in every section of the U. I learnt a lot about my adoptive country and how this sort of suburbanisation was somewhat unique here compared to other countries. Perhaps that is why he is so hopeful looking into the future It is really interesting looking at the suburbaniztion names and lack of organization often used in suburbs to fhe a sense of a country lane.

Defenders of sububranization Unborn Daniel K. Jul 21, Nicky rated it liked it. In conclusion, Jackson offers a controversial prediction: In Crabgrass Frontier, Kenneth Jackson explored the process of suburbanization in the United States, which he argued created a uniquely American way of life characterized by low Population density, near ubiquitous home ownership, the destruction of links to major urban centers, and a long journey to rhe.


At the same time the way suburban towns are being developed and designed is also now creating more of a sense of community and less of a concrete wasteland. Reasons for the wealthy leaving were varied, but srates desire to get away from the city’s “problems” — the noise of industry and the presence of common working folk — ranked high.

Crabgrass Frontier: The Suburbanization of the United States

I chose to read this book despite thinking that it would be obviously out of date and come to the wrong sort of conclusions because it was written in This first portion constructs the framework for what is to follow in the second half, which focuses on the zuburbanization century.

Thieves of Book Row McDade. Ridership decreased and many companies went out of business. Having been written in the s, the book anticipates, but is not aware of, a lot of the changes in urbanism that have been happening in the past year. Working towards a definition of social geography, I see it as changes in the environment and its use and quantifying those changes — and here is where Jackson shows his social history muscle, by asking those questions with a qualitative answer.

Jackson provides a synthesis of a variety of topics, but lacks much on the frlntier changes of suburbanism.

The Suburbanization of the United States. Given the massive growth of affordable dwellings accessible by the highway and train, families crabgrzss 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.

I read this for insight on my own journey from suburbs into a re-vitalized city. The book is broader than just that though, and traces the American elevation of the suburban ideal and disdain for the inner city back to the 19th century. As financial pressures create needs for cities to increase a tax base, suburban areas were forced to decide whether to remain attached to urban centers to provide moral and financial support for declining urban centers.


Second, the willingness to embrace new technologies, such as transportation, allowed for rapid change and innovation. There is a deep problem with an author who can have nice things to say about the atrocious mass public housing efforts during the Great Depression and afterward but has little or nothing nice to say about the suburbs of the United Kingdom, United States, and other settler colonies.

Jackson Limited preview – We’re probably the biggest homebodies on earth. Issues subjrbanization congestion, decentralization, and black migration facilitated the departure of whites first to the urban periphery and then to the suburbs.

Crabgrass Frontier: The Suburbanization of the United States – Kenneth T. Jackson – Google Books

In addition, there is no significant evidence directly linking the development of highway systems to declining urban populations. The simplest explanation, however, is that they could. The growth of mass transportation in the form of horsecars, trolleys and trains first put suburban residence in the possession of the well off, while the dramatic spread of roads, highways and automobiles following World War II, coupled with cheap but sturdy balloon frame construction, put it in reach of the middle class.

Jackson tracks the relationship between emerging transportation technology and the ability it creates for a frontker socioeconomic cross-section of the population to move further from urban centers while still being able to travel to work.

Jackson does a good job 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. Refresh and try again. Jackson correctly predicts that that some of suburganization forces that lead to the increase of the suburbs will also lead to their inevitable decline.