Creeping Conformity: How Canada Became Suburban, 1900-1960 by Richard HarrisCreeping Conformity: How Canada Became Suburban, 1900-1960 by Richard Harris

Creeping Conformity: How Canada Became Suburban, 1900-1960

byRichard Harris

Paperback | June 8, 2004

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Creeping Conformity, the first history of suburbanization in Canada, provides a geographical perspective – both physical and social – on Canada's suburban past. Shaped by internal and external migration, decentralization of employment, and increased use of the streetcar and then the automobile, the rise of the suburb held great social promise, reflecting the aspirations of Canadian families for more domestic space and home ownership.

After 1945 however, the suburbs became stereotyped as generic, physically standardized, and socially conformist places. By 1960, they had grown further away – physically and culturally – from their respective parent cities, and brought unanticipated social and environmental consequences. Government intervention also played a key role, encouraging mortgage indebtedness, amortization, and building and subdivision regulations to become the suburban norm. Suburban homes became less affordable and more standardized, and for the first time, Canadian commentators began to speak disdainfully of 'the suburbs,' or simply 'suburbia.' Creeping Conformity traces how these perceptions emerged to reflect a new suburban reality.

Richard Harris is a professor in the School of Geography and Earth Sciences at McMaster University.
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Title:Creeping Conformity: How Canada Became Suburban, 1900-1960Format:PaperbackDimensions:160 pages, 8.49 × 5.53 × 0.59 inPublished:June 8, 2004Publisher:University of Toronto Press, Scholarly Publishing DivisionLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0802084281

ISBN - 13:9780802084286

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Editorial Reviews

Creeping Conformity, the first history of suburbanization in Canada, provides a geographical perspective – both physical and social – on Canada's suburban past. Shaped by internal and external migration, decentralization of employment, and increased use of the streetcar and then the automobile, the rise of the suburb held great social promise, reflecting the aspirations of Canadian families for more domestic space and home ownership.After 1945 however, the suburbs became stereotyped as generic, physically standardized, and socially conformist places. By 1960, they had grown further away – physically and culturally – from their respective parent cities, and brought unanticipated social and environmental consequences. Government intervention also played a key role, encouraging mortgage indebtedness, amortization, and building and subdivision regulations to become the suburban norm. Suburban homes became less affordable and more standardized, and for the first time, Canadian commentators began to speak disdainfully of 'the suburbs,' or simply 'suburbia.' Creeping Conformity traces how these perceptions emerged to reflect a new suburban reality.'A major contribution to North American urban history, Creeping Conformity analyses the transformation of Canada's suburbs between 1900 and 1960. Everyone with an interest in class, gender, and metropolitan building patterns should read this remarkable book.' - Dolores Hayden, Professor of Architecture, Urbanism, and American Studies, Yale University