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City Bountiful: A Century of Community Gardening in America

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City Bountiful: A Century of Community Gardening in America Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

"The social history of American cities would not be complete without a full account of the rise of community open spaces. Lawson does exactly this by providing a compelling and poetic account of the history and making of urban gardens. Combining solid scholarship with engaging images of the gardens and stories of their makers, this book sheds new light on the value of urban open space. More important, it explains why community gardens need to stand alongside city parks as permanent open spaces. Essential reading for community developers and landscape architects as well as anyone who ventures outside, enthusiasm and shovel in hand, to improve their local environment.—Mark Francis, author of Urban Open Space and Village Homes

"The definitive history of the past hundred years of America's experience with community gardens. A labor of love by a garden activist, the book appears at a most appropriate time—today our city dwellers and suburbanites are retreating onto carpets of passive open space tended by homeowner associations and lawn care outfits. Lawson thoughtfully analyzes the weaknesses of community gardens when used as a response to social crises and, by contrast, investigates community gardens as an alternative to today's managed care of open space. Her history clearly presents a way of community living that we can elect if we choose her wisdom."—Sam Bass Warner, Jr, author of To Dwell Is to Garden

"An important book about how the urban gardening movement is transforming our landscape and reconnecting us to the land."—Alice Waters, Owner, Chez Panisse

Synopsis:

Since the 1890s, providing places for people to garden has been an inventive strategy to improve American urban conditions. There have been vacant-lot gardens, school gardens, Depression-era relief gardens, victory gardens, and community gardens—each representing a consistent impulse to return to gardening during times of social and economic change. In this critical history of community gardening in America, the most comprehensive review of the greening of urban communities to date, Laura J. Lawson documents the evolution of urban garden programs in the United States. Her vibrant narrative focuses on the values associated with gardening, the ebb and flow of campaigns during times of social and economic crisis, organizational strategies of these primarily volunteer campaigns, and the sustainability of current programs.

About the Author

Laura J. Lawson is Assistant Professor of Landscape Architecture at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. Her knowledge of community gardens has developed from academic interest as well as personal experience as coordinator of Berkeley Youth Alternatives' Community Garden Patch.

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations

List of Tables

Preface and Acknowledgments

Introduction. Garden Patches in American Cities

Part I. Early Garden Programs, 1890s to 1917

Introduction

1. An Alternative to Charity: The Vacant-Lot Cultivation Association

2. The School Garden Movement

3. The Goodness of Gardening: Gardens as Civic Improvement

Part II. National Urban Garden Campaigns, 1917 to 1945

Introduction

4. Patriotic Volunteerism: The War Garden Campaign

5. An Antidote for Idleness: Garden Programs of the 1930s Depression

6. Victory Gardens of World War II

Part III. Gardening for Community, 1945 to the Present

Introduction

7. The Community Garden Movement of the 1970s and 1980s

8. Community Greening: Urban Garden Programs from 1990 to the Present

9. A Look at Gardens Today

Conclusion. Sustaining a City Bountiful

Notes

Index

Product Details

ISBN:
9780520243439
Author:
Lawson, Laura J.
Publisher:
University of California Press
Subject:
History
Subject:
Sociology - Urban
Subject:
Community gardens.
Subject:
Community gardens - United States - History -
Subject:
General Gardening
Subject:
Gardening-History and Theory
Subject:
Gardening : General
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Publication Date:
20050531
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
Professional and scholarly
Language:
English
Illustrations:
75 b/w photographs, 11 tables
Pages:
382
Dimensions:
9 x 6 x 1 in 18 oz

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Related Subjects

Arts and Entertainment » Architecture » Landscape Architecture
Arts and Entertainment » Music » General
History and Social Science » Politics » General
History and Social Science » Sociology » Urban Studies » General
Home and Garden » Gardening » General
Home and Garden » Gardening » Small and Urban

City Bountiful: A Century of Community Gardening in America New Trade Paper
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Product details 382 pages University of California Press - English 9780520243439 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by ,
Since the 1890s, providing places for people to garden has been an inventive strategy to improve American urban conditions. There have been vacant-lot gardens, school gardens, Depression-era relief gardens, victory gardens, and community gardens—each representing a consistent impulse to return to gardening during times of social and economic change. In this critical history of community gardening in America, the most comprehensive review of the greening of urban communities to date, Laura J. Lawson documents the evolution of urban garden programs in the United States. Her vibrant narrative focuses on the values associated with gardening, the ebb and flow of campaigns during times of social and economic crisis, organizational strategies of these primarily volunteer campaigns, and the sustainability of current programs.
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