• Summary
  • Contents
  • Subject index

Providing a thorough and comprehensive survey of the contemporary urban world that is accessible to students, Urban People and Places: The Sociology of Cities, Suburbs, and Towns will give balanced treatment to both the process by which cities are built (i.e., urbanization) and the ways of life practiced by people that live and work in more urban places (i.e., urbanism) unlike most core texts in this area. Whereas most texts focus on the socio-economic causes of urbanization, this text analyses the cultural component: how the physical construction of places is, in part, a product of cultural beliefs, ideas, and practices and also how the culture of those who live, work, and play in various places is shaped, structured, and controlled by the built environment. Inasmuch as the primary focus will be on the United States, global discussion is composed with an eye toward showing how U.S. cities, suburbs, and towns are different and alike from their counterparts in Africa, Asia, and Central and South America

How the United States Became Urban
How the united states became urban

The urbanization of the United States, like that of Canada, was built on the back of England's mercantilist muscle and successful competition with other European societies for colonial supremacy in North America. The populating of Australia and the eventual ascendance of its four main cities was a necessary concession to the hard stop that those same colonial impulses came to with England's failure to rein in American colonists’ own mercantilist ambitions. And the key to this country's expansion and development as a preeminent world power today was the town that would be a city.

Americans are prolific town and city builders. Indeed, the whole idea behind England's push to colonize the Americas in the ...

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