American Dreamscape by Tom Martinson
The Pursuit of Happiness in Postwar Suburbia

No critic rating

Waiting for minimum critic reviews

See 2 Critic Reviews

unrated

Synopsis

Filmmakers, novelists, social critics, environmentalists - they all decry suburbia, and the myths of mindless conformity uncontrolled sprawl, decentralisation, and cultural blight continue to grow. But so do the suburbs. In a phenomenon unparalleled in the social history of modern, postwar America, more than 138,000,000 Americans-the majority of our national population-now live in suburbs; for the most part, happily. And Tom Martinson, a city planner whose fieldwork for this book has taken him to more than a hundred communities throughout the United States, has discovered why. Whereas recent titles have attracted media. attention for their indictments of suburbia as an American nightmare, this lucid, incisive volume displays conclusively that the suburbs, which are no less various than they are ubiquitous, defy the stereotypes of urbanist critics. Separating biases that characterise suburban communities as vacuous, wasteful, centreless places from their actuality, Martinson traces the evolution of suburbs over the past two centuries, examines the values that challenge and unsettle the urbanists, investigates charges that government unfairly favours suburbs over cities, and considers possibilities for the future development of suburbia. Martinson knows the issues, and asks some billion-dollar questions. He also has illuminating answers as well as copious elucidating photographs of suburbs across the country to support them, as with vision, wit, and historical perspective he surveys the wars on one of Americas premier cultural battleground.
 

About Tom Martinson

See more books from this Author
 
Published October 28, 2000 by Carroll & Graf Publishers. 288 pages
Genres: History, Political & Social Sciences. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for American Dreamscape

Kirkus Reviews

See more reviews from this publication

Martinson sets out to defend the suburbia of both his youth and adulthood from the closed-mindedness of urban intellectual elites.

| Read Full Review of American Dreamscape: The Purs...

Publishers Weekly

See more reviews from this publication

In a spirited, often amusingly belligerent defense of the suburbs, Martinson vehemently rebuts what he sees as an overarching, mainstream cultural myth that U.S. suburbs are detrimental to the lives of their inhabitants and to society in general.

| Read Full Review of American Dreamscape: The Purs...

Reader Rating for American Dreamscape
70%

An aggregated and normalized score based on 8 user ratings from iDreamBooks & iTunes


Rate this book!

Add Review