nthposition online magazine

The landscape of mass consumption

by Lizabeth Cohen

[ politics | opinion - february 03 ]

Few would dispute that at the start of the 21st century, we are inhabiting a world being reshaped by a global capitalist marketplace, where transnational flows of capital and goods and new structures of information, transportation, and communication are transforming our daily experiences and the physical spaces where we live them. The way we make a living, where we dwell, how and where we interact with others, what and how we consume, the political authorities to whom we are accountable, and so many other aspects of our lives are now in flux. As an individual living in today's world, I, of course, monitor these transformations, but rather than predict the future impact of economic globalization, as an historian I feel better equipped to probe an earlier, but similarly formative, economic restructuring that helped define the American national, and especially metropolitan, experience of the last half-century. As we contemplate the complex ramifications of that post-World War II restructuring, they may suggest the kind of changes we should be alert to in our own times.

I would like to begin by establishing two points: first, that such a dramatic and multi-dimensional shift indeed occurred after World War II - the establishment of a new order that I have entitled the Consumers' Republic - and secondly, that it had particular consequences for the physical shape of postwar metropolises.

The United States came out of World War II deeply determined to prolong and enhance the economic recovery brought on by the war, lest the crippling depression of the 1930s return. During wartime, a mass production war machine, operating at full throttle to produce the material for battle, had already provided many new jobs and filled many empty pockets and bank accounts. Ensuring a prosperous peacetime would require making new kinds of products and selling them to different kinds of markets. Although military production would persist, and expand greatly with the Cold War, its critical partner in delivering prosperity was the mass consumer market. A wide-range of economic interests and players - including strident anti-New Deal big businessmen, moderate and liberal capitalists, labor and its allies on the Left, and government officials - all came to endorse the centrality of mass consumption to a successful reconversion from war to peace. In some ways, this was the same Keynesian scheme that the New Dealers had seized upon to pull them out of the Great Depression in the late 1930s. But the experience of war had turned promising strategy to proven reality. Factory assembly lines newly renovated with Uncle Sam's dollars stood awaiting conversion from building tanks and munitions for battle to producing cars and appliances for sale to consumers.

If encouraging a mass consumer economy seemed to make good economic sense for the nation, it still required extensive efforts to get Americans to cooperate. Certainly, there was tremendous pent-up demand for goods, housing, and almost everything else after a decade and a half of wrenching depression and war, but consumers were also cautious about spending the savings and war bonds that they had gladly accumulated while consumption was restricted on the home front. Hence, beginning during the war and with great fervor after it, businesses, labor unions, government agencies, the mass media, advertisers, and many other purveyors of the new postwar order conveyed the message that mass consumption was not a personal indulgence. Rather, it was a civic responsibility designed to improve the living standards of all Americans, a critical part of a prosperity-producing cycle of expanded consumer demand fueling greater production, thereby creating more well-paying jobs and in turn more affluent consumers capable of stoking the economy with their purchases.

For its promoters, this mass-consumption driven economy held out the promise of political as well as economic democracy. Reconversion after World War II raised the hopes of Americans of many political persuasions and social positions that not only a more prosperous, but also a more equitable and democratic American society would finally be possible in the mid-20th century due to the enormous, and war-proven, capacities of mass production and mass consumption. As more Americans lived better and on a more equal footing with their neighbors, it was expected, the dream of an egalitarian America would finally be achieved. Politicians never tired of tying America's political and economic superiority over the Soviet Union to its more democratic distribution of goods. In 1959, at the American Trade Exhibition in Moscow, Vice-President Richard Nixon went so far as to tell the Russian people that all the homes, televisions and radios that Americans owned brought them closer to the Marxist ideal of a classless society than the Soviets. [1]

The new postwar order deemed, then, that the good customer devoted to "more, newer and better" was in fact the good citizen, responsible for making the United States a more desirable place for all its people. As Bride Magazine told the acquisitive readers of its handbook for newlyweds, when you buy "the dozens of things you never bought or even thought of before, ... you are helping to build greater security for the industries of this country... [W]hat you buy and how you buy it is very vital in your new life - and to our whole American way of living." [2] Wherever one looked in the aftermath of war, one found a vision of postwar America where the general good was best served not by frugality or even moderation, but by individuals pursuing personal wants in a flourishing mass consumption marketplace.

Private consumption and public benefit, it was widely argued, went hand in hand. And what made this strategy all the more attractive was the way it promised a socially progressive end of social equality without requiring politically progressive means of redistributing existing wealth. Rather, it was argued, an ever-growing economy built around the twin dynamics of increased productivity and mass purchasing power would expand the overall pie without reducing the size of any of the portions. When President Truman challenged Americans in 1950 to "achieve a far better standard of living for every industrious family" within a decade, he characteristically reassured them that "raising the standards of our poorest families will not be at the expense of anybody else. We will all benefit from doing it, for the incomes of the rest of us will rise at the same time." [3]

What I have called for convenience A Consumers' Republic - my phrase, not a label used at the time - had far-reaching implications for the physical character of postwar America. To begin with, new house construction provided the bedrock of the postwar mass consumption economy, both through turning "home" into an expensive commodity for purchase by many more consumers than ever before and by stimulating demand for related commodities. As today, the purchase of a new single-family home almost always obligated buyers to acquire new household appliances and furnishings, and if the house was in the suburbs, as over 80 per cent were, at least one car as well.

The scale of new residential construction following World War II was unprecedented. And it was made possible by a mixed economy of private enterprise bolstered by government subsidy - in the form of mortgage guarantees with low interest rates and no down payment directly to buyers as part of the veterans benefits under the GI Bill of 1944, and indirectly to buyers through loan insurance to lenders and developers through the Federal Housing Administration (FHA). The federal government assisted as well through granting mortgage interest deductions on income taxes, a mass tax since World War II, and constructing highways from cities out to the farmland that overnight was being transformed into vast suburban tract developments.

This promotion of private market solutions to boost the mass consumption economy - even if heavily subsidized by the federal government - turned a dire social need for shelter into an economic boom. The ground had already been set during wartime, when consumers across the economic spectrum were encouraged to imagine "home" as a newly-built, single-family detached house for purchase in the suburbs, not a rented residence in a multiple dwelling in the city. One out of every four homes standing in the United States in 1960 went up in the 1950s. As a result of this explosion in house construction, by the same year, 62 per cent of Americans could claim that they owned their own homes, in contrast to only 44 per cent as recently as 1940 (the biggest jump in home ownership rates ever recorded). Home building became so central a component of postwar prosperity, in fact, that beginning in 1959, the United States Census Bureau began calculating "housing starts" on a monthly basis as a key indicator of the economy's vitality. [4]

The passage of time revealed, however, that despite the idealistic expectations that launched the Consumers' Republic, private housing's centrality to the mass consumption marketplace favored certain kinds of metropolitan locales, as well as particular social groups, over other ones. Dependence on new single-family, privately-owned, detached home construction to solve the enormous postwar housing crunch as well as to fuel the economy privileged suburbs over cities. As millions of Americans concluded it was cheaper and more desirable to own rather than rent, they left older, often deteriorating housing in urban neighborhoods for the new suburban communities favored by the VA and FHA loan programs and reinforced by the lending policies of private banks. Between 1947 and 1953 alone, the suburban population increased by 43 per cent, in contrast to a general population increase of only 11 per cent. Over the course of the 1950s, in the twenty largest metropolitan areas, cities would grow by only .1 per cent, their suburbs by an explosive 45 per cent. By 1965, a majority of Americans would make their homes in suburbs rather than cities. Today, typical American metropolitan areas range in the proportion of their center city population from the 20 per cent of Boston to the 30 per cent of New York, but overwhelmingly their populations are suburban. [5]

The home ownership at the heart of the Consumers' Republic did more than expand the numbers and enhance the status of suburbanites over urbanites. In the process, it advantaged some kinds of people over other kinds. Through their greater access to home mortgages, credit, and tax advantages, men benefited over women, whites over blacks, and middle-class Americans over working-class ones. Men, for example, secured low VA mortgages, and the additional credit that home ownership made available, as a result of their veteran status in World War II and the Korean War, while women generally did not. White Americans more easily qualified for mortgages, including those dispensed through the GI Bill which worked through existing - and consistently discriminatory - banking institutions, and more readily found suburban houses to buy than African Americans could.

And while some working-class Americans did move to suburbs, increasingly they tended to settle in "cops and firemen" suburban towns quite distinct from where successful professionals and entrepreneurs lived. Studies of Levittown, Long Island in 1950 and 1960 documented a shift away from a mixed class suburb to a more exclusively working and lower-middle-class one, as white-collar residents moved out of Levittown to more affluent communities nearby. [6] Even when factories moved out of cities into suburban areas and were welcomed by communities eager for their property tax dollars, often their workers could not live there because of the unwillingness of these towns to make the zoning changes that would have made them affordable. (Examples from New Jersey include Ford's move to Mahwah and IBM's to Franklin Lakes.)

The class sorting that took place in Levittown, LI, was indicative of a metropolitan landscape where whole communities were increasingly being stratified along class and racial lines. As home, particularly a new one, in the Consumers' Republic became a commodity to be traded up like a car, rather than an emotional investment in a neighborhood or church parish, "property values" became the new mantra. Of course, people still chose the towns they lived in, but increasingly they selected among internally homogeneous suburban communities occupying different rungs in a hierarchy of property values. Communities of new homes could most easily be pegged: when the annual income required to buy and retain a typical new home being built in the new middle-class Morris County, NJ suburb of Parsipanny-Troy Hills was estimated at $12,000 in the early 1960s, policemen and firemen in Northern New Jersey earned about $8,000 a year, while only l7 per cent of all Newark families - and only nine per cent of non-white families - earned over $9,000. Moreover, local zoning regulations enforcing plot and house size, and prohibiting multiple dwellings in suburban towns, contributed as well to the sorting out of prospective buyers by social class, and implicitly, by race.

Not only did house prices position a community on that ladder of prestige, but so too did its racial profile. Many suburban whites leaving cities with growing African American populations - due to the linked trends of white flight and massive black migration north and west after World War II - felt that only an all-white community would insure the safety of their investment, often their entire life savings, and they did everything within their means to restrict blacks' access to real estate. What one cynical Newark public official in 1962 labeled "segregurbia" flourished, he said, because "the free enterprise system lurking in many American hearts has provided more moves to all-white suburbs than the billion words of love have promoted the spiritual advantages of economic and integrated city living." [7] When William and Daisy Myers tried to move in to Levittown, Pennsylvania in 1957, the first black family to manage to buy a house there, one of their neighbors who joined the violent protests against them conveyed to a Life magazine reporter how important property values were to people whose major asset was now their home: "He's probably a n ice guy, but every time I look at him I see $2,000 drop off the value of my house." [8]

This increasing segmentation of suburbia by class and race fueled even more damaging social inequality because of Americans' traditional devotion to home-rule as a critical pillar of democracy, a conviction which only intensified with suburbanization in the postwar period, despite the common assumption that the federal government was where the governmental action was in the post-World War II era. As a result of postwar Americans' loyalty to localism, the quality of crucial services soon varied much more than they formerly had when more people lived within larger units of cross-class and interracial cities. Education, for example, widely recognized as the best ticket to success in postwar America, became captive to the inequalities of the new metropolitan landscape, since - in the American system - local communities substantially provided, and paid for, their own schools through local property taxes. The wealthier the community, the more it had to spend, and the greater prospect of its children receiving the kind of education that led to prestigious college and graduate degrees and well-paying jobs. (This inequality has in fact led to intense battling in state supreme courts throughout the nation, everywhere from New Hampshire and Vermont to Texas and New Jersey, over equalizing school spending across communities in a state.)

By putting its faith in the potential of the private mass consumption marketplace to deliver opportunity to all rather than in expanding publicly-funded rental housing or adopting policies that redistributed wealth, the Consumers' Republic contributed to growing inequality and fragmentation, both spatially and structurally. Despite an early commitment to selling to the "mass," before very long a postwar economy and society ostensibly built on "mass consumption" ironically created a reality of economic and social stratification. This segmentation was only reinforced by developments in marketing and advertising which simultaneously discovered the greater profits to be made in segmenting the market into distinctive sub-markets based on gender, class, age, race, ethnicity, and lifestyle. (I explore this phenomenon in another chapter of my book.) Residential suburbanization, the engineering of a social landscape to serve property values more effectively than broad human needs, became one of several arenas in postwar America where Americans shared less and less common physical space and civic culture.

The segmentation of metropolitan America was accompanied by the commercialization and privatization of public space. Initially, most postwar suburban home developers made little effort to provide for residents' commercial needs. Rather, new suburbanites were expected to fend for themselves by driving to the existing "market towns," which often offered the only commerce for miles, or to return to the city to shop. By the mid-1950s, however, a new market structure - the regional shopping center - well suited to this suburbanized, mass consumption-oriented society emerged. Although it had precedents in the branch department stores and prototypical shopping centers constructed between the 1920s and 1940s in outlying city neighborhoods and in older suburban communities, the new regional shopping center was on a much larger scale and, in the absence or inadequacy of existing town centers, offered commercial developers a unique opportunity to re-imagine community life with their private projects at its heart. What developed was a vision and soon a reality of suburban living where the center of community life was a site devoted to mass consumption, and what was promoted as public space was in fact privately owned and geared to maximizing profits.

The typical shopping center was strategically located at the intersection of major highways or along the busiest thoroughfares, attracting patrons from at least a half an hour's drive away. Customers would usually come by car, park in the abundant lots provided, and then proceed by foot. Most shopping centers had two or three department stores serving as anchors, surrounded by 50 to 75 smaller stores. In the early years, when shopping center were establishing their legitimacy as community centers, it was not uncommon for them to house services like post offices, banks, meeting and exhibit spaces, theaters and even churches. Moreover, in selling themselves as improvements on the chaos, inefficiency, and ugliness of downtowns, shopping centers boasted that their centralized administrations determined the perfect mix and scientific placement of stores. Greater shopper pleasure and storeowner profitability inevitably followed, they bragged.

When developers and store owners set out to make the shopping center a more perfect downtown, they explicitly aimed to exclude from this community space unwanted social groups such as vagrants, prostitutes, racial minorities, political activists and poor people. They did so through a combination of marketing and policing. Location alone helped, for the suburbs where shopping centers located were overwhelming white and middle class, and not easily reached by more diverse urban dwellers. Although buses served some shopping centers, only a tiny proportion of patrons arrived that way and bus routes were carefully planned to transport non-driving customers - particularly women - from neighboring suburbs, not low-income consumers from cities. Moreover, as developers sought sites close to the affluent populations to which they catered, their presence augmented the prosperity of host communities, exacerbating the already unequal distribution of economic resources in metropolitan areas. Not only did a suburban municipality with a shopping center find its residential property values increased by proximity to stores, but the presence of major commercial development greatly enhanced its tax base and, in turn, its core services like schools.

Shopping centers also excluded unwanted elements through explicit market segmentation. Although individual department stores in a city center had long targeted particular markets defined by class and race, some selling, for example, to "the carriage trade" at the upper end and others to the bargain hunters at the lower, shopping centers applied market segmentation on the scale of a downtown. From the start, all aimed at middle-income customers, and over time, they more and more targeted differentiated publics, minimizing the opportunity for social mixing that had occurred on the city street if not on the retail shop floor.

Whereas at first developers had sought to legitimize the new shopping centers by arguing for their centrality to commerce and community, over time they discovered that those two commitments could be in conflict. When antiwar protesters or striking employees noisily took their causes to the mall, respecting the rights of free speech and free assembly were not always good for business, and could conflict with the rights of private property owners - the shopping centers - to control entry to their land. Beginning in the 1960s, American courts all the way up to the Supreme Court struggled with the political consequences of having moved public life off the street into the privately owned shopping center. The ultimate outcome was that the United States Supreme Court ruled that the first Amendment of the US Constitution did not guarantee free access to shopping centers and it was left to the states to decide whether or not their own constitutions did. Only in six states have state supreme courts protected citizens' rights in privately owned shopping centers, and even in some of those states activity has been limited.

Meanwhile, shopping centers began to reconsider the desirable balance between commerce and community in what had become the major sites where suburbanites congregated. In time, they retreated from housing public services and, whenever possible, they banned or aggressively discouraged "undesirables" such as loitering young people, striking employees, leafletting and signature-collecting political activists, and individuals with appearances deemed menacing. (In a recent celebrated case outside of Chicago, a mall even tried to ban senior citizens from their morning walks, arguing that they spent little money and annoyed store owners and shoppers. When the seniors protested, claiming their right to access, a barrage of bad publicity convinced the mall to retreat.)

The shopping centers of the 1950s and 1960s also contributed to a new calibration of consumer authority in the household between men and women that in many ways limited women's power over the family purse. In some ways, the physical space of shopping centers was designed for women shoppers, ranging from the extra-wide parking spots for new female drivers to interiors with stroller ramps, baby-sitting services and special lockers for ladies' wraps. "I wouldn't know how to design for a man," admitted Jack Follet of John Graham, Inc, a firm that built many shopping centers. But for all the attention that shopping centers supposedly lavished on women, they did little to enhance their social and economic power. Rather, as mass consumption became more and more central to the health of the economy, shopping centers and the stores within them celebrated the family as a consumer unit and paid increasing attention to men as chief breadwinner. Women may have orchestrated their families' shopping, but marketing research documented that other family members, particularly decision-making husbands, increasingly accompanied them on buying expeditions. As the manager of a toy store in Shoppers' World in Framingham, MA explained it in 1953, "It's a curious thing about a shopping center. Most of our daytime shoppers are women, who are just looking around. It's hard to sell to them during the day but if they're at all interested, they'll be back at night - with their husbands. That's when we do the real business." [9]

Men's increased involvement in family purchasing was reinforced by the huge expansion of credit that shopping centers encouraged, making credit cards and other forms of credit the legal tender of mall purchasing. Until the passage of equal credit legislation in the 1970s, the growing importance of credit deepened men's oversight of the spending of their wives and daughters, as male names and credit ratings were required for female purchasing. Finally, shopping centers put limits on women's independence as workers, not just consumers, as suburban stores came to depend on part-time female sales help living nearby, to whom they offered low pay and few benefits. Not only did suburban housewives offer cheap and flexible labor, but their hiring helped branch department stores undermine the retail clerks unions that had successfully organized the main stores downtown.

One might ask how the privatization of public space in the Consumers' Republic has actually mattered. I would argue that coupled with the inequality fostered by segmented metropolitan living it has discriminated unfairly in granting rights and benefits to its citizens. Many social theorists have linked access to public space to the vitality of a democratic public sphere. I would not go so far as to insist that all public spaces are by definition democratic, nor that democracy necessarily requires plentiful public space. Nor would I deny that even in a regime committed to protecting public space for democratic ends that there are not still contests among competing publics over access. But I would claim that when citizens like those in the Consumers' Republic experienced too variant a quality of life, too unequal an opportunity for success, and too inhibited an ability to participate fully in public debate, their society seriously abrogated the democratic aims of its own architects after World War II. And it was not just the results of exclusion that hurt - that all voices were not heard nor that some people enjoyed opportunities denied to others. The very act of denying access itself undermined the society's democratic integrity. [10]

Were this only a phenomenon of postwar American suburbs, as fast as they have been growing and as troubling as that might be, it would be one thing. What has magnified the problem, however, is that city leaders have coped with population decline, the flight of retail trade, and the public's fear for its safety on increasingly unfamiliar urban streets by trying to beat the suburbs at their own game - by modeling the renovation of urban public space on the suburban model, making downtowns, too, more commercialized and privatized.

Over the last half-century, hardly an American city has avoided the "mallification" of downtown, with pedestrian malls and festival marketplaces closed to transportation, and enclosed shopping centers entered through parking garages. For those shoppers and workers who still venture downtown, the city increasingly resembles the suburban mall, offering them, in their private cars, direct access to privately owned and policed, usually commercial, spaces, and passage out without entry onto city streets. As a Catholic priest and community activist described downtown Newark in 1997 (admittedly one of the most extreme cases), "Prime office space is that with garage parking, and they are all built like fortresses, with their lobbies up on the second floor and retail space in atriums and courts. ...It's not very pedestrian-friendly and inviting. The result is you have two cities downtown: the one in and around the offices, and the one on the streets where the people are." [11]

Urban downtowns thus have mimicked the suburbs' increasing privatization of public space, blurring the lines between what is public and private, civic and commercial, and infringing on individuals' civil rights. For example, in Stamford, Connecticut, a Starbucks coffee shop opened in the city's public library, modeled after the increasingly ubiquitous café-bookstores like Borders and Barnes & Noble, fulfilling its Vice-President's promise that by opening a new Starbucks every 40 hours "we are the third place in your community." [12] The proliferation of private cell phones makes public telephones fewer in number and higher in cost. Self-taxing private business improvement districts perform more and more of the work that public agencies once did - cleaning, policing, and upgrading neighborhoods - and they do so free of the municipal oversight and public accountability that protects the rights of all citizens in those spaces. Celebrated recent cases in New York revealed the guardians of public space seeking the same rights to exclude as private property owners enjoy, whether they were Amtrak executives seeking to eject homeless people from Penn Station or the Mayor of New York trying to bar protesters from the steps of City Hall. [13] Moreover, more and more Americans - estimated at one in six - now live under the private police protection and private services of gated or other kinds of association-managed communities, such as condominiums or cooperatives.

Where, we might ask, are we headed? The picture is not all grim. A few enlightened office holders are pushing to consolidate city and suburban government to create regional tax bases to support a less fragmented and stratified world of metropolitan services. Stubborn efforts continue on the Main Streets of America to protect the viability of downtown retail business from encroachment by outlying malls or megastores like Walmart. Some cities like Atlanta, Georgia are making a priority of building affordable housing for ordinary, middle-class Americans to make home ownership and city living again compatible. And with the low home mortgage rates of recent years, more working-class and minority Americans are buying homes in the suburbs, though given the deep racial and class patterning of suburbia, their greater presence there has hardly proved synonymous with racial and class integration. [14]

What does not seem to be improving but rather escalating, however, is the trend toward the privatization of what should be the public realm in a democratic society. With market standards defining success in more and more spheres of American life, it becomes harder and harder to defend the "public" if it comes at the cost of profits, flexibility, efficiency or technological progress. What endangers public space is nothing less than what endangers all of society when the test of value becomes limited to market viability. Even the notion of public government itself is at risk when a document like the Clinton-Gore National Performance Review Report aimed at "reinventing government," entitled From Red Tape to Results: Creating a Government That Works Better and Costs Less (released in 1993), draws its inspiration from the private transaction of retailer and customer: "Effective, entrepreneurial governments insist on customer satisfaction. They listen carefully to their customers - using surveys, focus groups, and the like. They restructure their basic operations to meet customers' needs. And they use market dynamics such as competition and customer service to create incentives that drive their employees to put customers first." And these private market models for government have only grown over the last decade.

During the last half-century, Americans' confidence that an economy and culture built around mass consumption could best deliver greater democracy and equality has led us from the Consumers' Republic to what I call the "consumerization of the republic". Advocates first for the postwar suburb, then the city, and increasingly the nation itself have all come to judge the success of the public realm much like other purchased goods, by the personal benefit individual citizen-consumers derive from it. When Americans in the 21st century ask of the public domain "Am I getting my money's worth" rather than "what's best for America", they knowingly or not speak in an idiom that evolved out of the misguided conviction of the Consumers' Republic that dynamic private markets could deliver a piece of the action to one and all at the very same time.

Notes

1 Quoted in Thomas Hine, Populuxe (New York: Alfred A Knopf, 1987), p. 129. [Back]
2 Bride Magazine quote from Brett Harvey, The Fifties: A Women's Oral History (New York: HarperCollins, 1993), p110. [Back]
3 "Address in Pendleton, Oregon," May 10, 1950, Public Papers of Harry S Truman, 1950 (Washington DC: US Government Printing Office, 1951), p362. [Back]
4 Pearce C Kelley, Consumer Economics (Homewood, IL: Richard D Irwin, Inc, 1953), pp464-67; Harold Vatter, "The Inheritance of the Preceding Decades" Department of Commerce, "We the Americans... Our Homes"; and President's Committee on Urban Housing, "A Decent Home"; all in John F Walker and Harold G Vatter, eds., History of the US Economy since World War II (Armonk, NY: ME Sharpe, 1996), pp21-23, 235-37, 358-62; United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, Department of Labor, How American Buying Habits Change (Washington, DC: United States Government Printing Office, 1959), pp74-75; Thomas A Bailey, David M Kennedy, and Lizabeth Cohen, The American Pageant, 11th edition (Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1998), p927; Kathryn Murphy, New Housing and Its Materials, 1940-56, Bulletin No 1231 (Washington, DC: United States Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics, 1958), p2; United States Department of Commerce, Bureau of the Census, Construction Reports - Housing Starts, C-20 Supplement, 1972, p68. Prior to 1959, housing starts were estimated on a monthly basis and calculated on an annual basis by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, suggesting that the interest was as much in employment opportunities as in construction activity. [Back]
5 Jon C Teaford, The Twentieth-Century American City: Problem, Promise, and Reality (Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 1986), p98; "Cities and Suburbs: A Harvard Magazine Roundtable," Harvard Magazine, January-February 2000), p54. [Back]
6 William S Dobriner, "Social Change in Levittown," in Dobriner, Class in Suburbia (Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall, Inc, 1963), pp85-126. [Back]
7 Daniel S Anthony, 'Some Psychological Implications of Integration," The Brookings Institution Committee on Problems of the American Community, Newark, New Jersey, February 23, 1962, Daniel S Anthony Papers, Newark Public Library, New Jersey Room, Box 3, pp9, 12. [Back]
8 "Integration Troubles Beset Northern Town," Life, September 2, 1957, pp43-46. [Back]
9 Arthur Herzog, "Shops, Culture, Centers - and More," New York Times Magazine, November 18, 1962, p35; Irving Roberts, "Toy Selling Techniques in a Shopping Center," Playthings, July 1953, p112. [Back]
10 See, for example, Jürgen Habermas, The Structural Transformation of the Public Sphere: An Inquiry into a Category of Bourgeois Society, Thomas Burger trans, with Frederick Lawrence (Cambridge, MA: 1989); Papers delivered at conference, "Debating the City 2: Urban Visions-Public Space," The Museum of Sydney, March 18, 2000: Jennifer Barrett, "Gardens: Making Space for the Public?," Kim Dovey, "Democracy and Public Space?" [Back]
11 "In Riot's Shadow, a City Stumbles On," New York Times, July 14, 1997. [Back]
12 Tracy Challenger, AGORA COALITION, Network Member Update, February 8, 2000. [Back]
13 "Amtrak Is Ordered Not to Eject the Homeless from Penn Station," New York Times, February 22, 1995; "Can Amtrack Be a Censor?" Washington Post, February 22, 1995; "Judge Strikes Down Rule Limiting Protesters on City Hall Steps in New York," New York Times, April 7, 2000. [Back]
14 "Cities and Suburbs: A Harvard Magazine Roundtable," p107; "Saying Goodbye to the "Burbs," New York Times, March 5, 2000; "2 Parties Seek to Exploit Nonstop Suburban Boom," New York Times, May 4, 1999. [Back]