Synopses & Reviews
Traces the history of urban social relations and urban geography
The Evolution of American Urban History blends historical perspectives on society, economics, politics, and policy, while focusing on the ways in which diverse peoples have inhabited and interacted in cities. It tackles ethnic and racial minority issues, offers multiple perspectives on women, and highlights urbanization's constantly shifting nature.
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This interesting and informative book shows how different groups of urban residents with different social, economic, and political power cope with the urban environment, struggle to make a living, participate in communal institutions, and influence the direction of cities and urban life. An absorbing book, The Evolution of American Urban Society surveys the dynamics of American urbanization from the sixteenth century to the present, skillfully blending historical perspectives on society, economics, politics, and policy, and focusing on the ways in which diverse peoples have inhabited and interacted in cities. Key topics: Broad coverage includes: the Colonial Age, commercialization and urban expansion, life in the walking city, industrialization, newcomers, city politics, the social and physical environment, the 1920s and 1930s, the growth of suburbanization, and the future of modern cities. Market: An interesting and necessary read for anyone involved in urban sociology, including urban planners, city managers, and those in the urban political arena.
About the Author
Peter C. Baldwin is Professor of History at the University of Connecticut. He is the author of two other books: In the Watches of the Night: Life in the Nocturnal City, 1820-1930 (Chicago: 2012), which traces the changing schedules of nocturnal activity in the urban Northeast and Midwest during the long century when cities became fully illuminated by gaslight and electricity; and Domesticating the Street: The Reform of Public Space in Hartford, 1850-1930 (Columbus: 1999), which explores civic reformers’ efforts to make the use of streets conform to values associated with the middle-class home. His essays have appeared in the Journal of Urban History, Journal of Social History, and Environmental History, among others. He is co-editor, with Howard Chudacoff, of Major Problems in American Urban and Suburban History, 2nd ed. He is currently working on a micro-history of religion and sexuality in the mid-nineteenth century, focusing on the diaries of a Massachusetts-born educator.
Table of Contents
Chapter 1. Urban America in the Colonial Age, 1500—1776
Chapter 2. Urban Expansion in the New Nation, 1776-1860
Chapter 3. Life in the Walking City, 1820—1865
Chapter 4. Industrialization and the Changing Shape of the City, 1865—1920
Chapter 5. Newcomers and the Urban Core, 1865—1920
Chapter 6. Bosses and Reformers in City Politics, 1870-1920
Chapter 7. Reforming the Social and Physical Environment, 1870-1920
Chapter 8. Cities in an Age of Metropolitanism: The 1920s and 1930s
Chapter 9. The Emerging “Urban Crisis,” 1941—1975
Chapter 10.New Hope and New Concerns in the American City