Bibliography of suburbs  

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

A large number of books and articles have been written on the subject of suburbs and suburban living as a regional, national or worldwide phenomenon. This is a selected bibliography of scholarly and analytical works, listed by subject region and focus.



  • Archer, John. Architecture and Suburbia: From English Villa to American Dream House, 1690–2000. University of Minnesota Press, 2005.
  • Boulton, Jeremy. Neighbourhood and Society: A London Suburb in the Seventeenth Century (Cambridge Studies in Population, Economy and Society in Past Time) (2005)
  • Dyos, Harold James. Victorian suburb;: A study of the growth of Camberwell (1966)
  • Galinou, Mireille. Cottages and Villas: The Birth of the Garden Suburb (2011)
  • Jordan, Christine. Illustrated History of Leicester's Suburbs (2003)
  • Kuchta, Todd. Semi-Detached Empire: Suburbia and the Colonization of Britain, 1880 to the Present (2010)
  • Robey, Ann et al. Rediscovered Utopias: Saving London's Suburbs (2010)
  • Wilks, John. Walks Through History - Birmingham: Edgbaston: the creation of luxury suburbia (2011)


  • Harris, Richard. Unplanned Suburbs: Toronto's American Tragedy, 1900 to 1950 (1999)
  • Harris, Richard. Creeping Conformity: How Canada Became Suburban, 1900-1960 (2004)
  • Lewis, Robert. Manufacturing Montreal: The Making of an Industrial Landscape, 1850 to 1930. Johns Hopkins University Press, 2001.
  • Lorimer, James, and Evelyn Ross. The Second City Book: Studies of Urban and Suburban Canada (1977)
  • Morton, Suzanne. Ideal Surroundings: Domestic Life in a Working-Class Suburb in the 1920s (Studies in Gender and History) (1995)
  • Whitzman, Carolyn. Suburb, Slum, Urban Village: Transformations in Toronto's Parkdale Neighbourhood, 1875-2002 (2010)

United States


  • Baxandall, Rosalyn and Elizabeth Ewen. Picture Windows: How the Suburbs Happened. New York: Basic Books, 2000.
  • Beauregard, Robert A. When America Became Suburban. University of Minnesota Press, 2006.
  • Bruegmann, Robert. Sprawl: A Compact History. University of Chicago Press, 2005.
  • Duany, Andrés and Elizabeth Plater-Zyberk. Suburban Nation: The Rise of Sprawl and the Decline of the American Dream. North Point Press, 2000.
  • Fishman, Robert. Bourgeois Utopias: The Rise and Fall of Suburbia. Basic Books, 1987.
  • Gardner, Todd. “The Slow Wave: The Changing Residential Status of Cities and Suburbs in the United States, 1850–1949.” Journal of Urban History 27, no. 3 (March 2001): 293–312.
  • Hanlon, Bernadette, John Rennie Short and Thomas J. Vicino. Cities and Suburbs: New Metropolitan Realities in the U.S. Routledge, 2010.
  • Harris, Richard and Robert Lewis. “The Geography of North American Cities and Suburbs, 1900–1950: A New Synthesis.” Journal of Urban History 27, no. 3 (March 2001): 262–92.
  • Hayden, Dolores. Building Suburbia: Green Fields and Urban Growth, 1820–2000. Vintage Books, 2003.
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  • Muller, Peter O. Contemporary Suburban America. Prentice–Hall, 1981.
  • Mumford, Lewis. The Culture of Cities. Harcourt Brace, 1938.
  • Mumford, Lewis. “Suburbia — and Beyond.” In The City in History: Its Origins, Its Transformations, and Its Prospects, by Lewis Mumford, 483–503. Harcourt, Brace & World, 1961.
  • Nicolaides, Becky M. and Andrew Weise, editors. The Suburb Reader. Routledge, 2006.
  • Palen, J. John. The Suburbs. McGraw–Hill, 1995.
  • Stilgoe, John R. Borderland: Origins of the American Suburb, 1820–1939. Yale University Press, 1989.
  • Teaford, Jon C. The American Suburb: The Basics. Routledge, 2008.

Specialized studies

  • Archer, John. Architecture and Suburbia: From English Villa to American Dream House, 1690–2000. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2005.
  • Archer, John. “Country and City in the American Romantic Suburb.” The Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians 42, no. 2 (May 1983): 139–56.
  • Baldassare, Mark. Trouble in Paradise: The Suburban Transformation in America. New York: Columbia University Press, 1986.
  • Baumgartner, M. P. The Moral Order of a Suburb. New York: Oxford University Press, 1988.
  • Binford, Henry C. The First Suburbs: Residential Communities on the Boston Periphery, 1815–1860. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1985.
  • Blakely, Edward J. and Mary Gail Snyder. Fortress America: Gated Communities in the United States. Washington, D.C.: Brookings Institution, 1997.
  • Blauvelt, Andrew, ed. Worlds Away: New Suburban Landscapes. Walker Art Center, 2008.
  • Conn, Steven and Max Page, editors. Building the Nation: Americans Write About Their Architecture, Their Cities, and Their Landscape. University of Pennsylvania Press, 2003.
  • Crawford, Margaret. Building the Workingman’s Paradise: The Design of American Company Towns. Verso, 1995.
  • Davis, Mike. City of Quartz: Excavating the Future in Los Angeles. London: Verso, 1990.
  • Donoghue, John. Alexander Jackson Davis, Romantic Architect, 1803–1892. New York: Arno Press, 1977.
  • Douglass, Harlan Paul. The Suburban Trend. 1925.
  • Downs, Jr., Arthur Channing. “Downing’s Newburgh Villa.” Bulletin of the Association for Preservation Technology 4, nos. 3–4 (1972): 1–113.
  • Ebner, Michael H. Creating Chicago’s North Shore: A Suburban History. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1988.
  • Flint, Anthony. This Land: The Battle Over Sprawl and the Future of America. Johns Hopkins University Press, 2006.
  • Fogelson, Robert M. Bourgeois Nightmares: Suburbia, 1870–193'. Yale University Press, 2005.
  • Garreau, Joel. Edge City: Life on the New Frontier. New York: Doubleday, 1991.
  • Gruenberg, Sidonie Matsner. "The Challenge of the New Suburbs." Marriage and Family Living 17, no. 2 (May 1955): 133–37.
  • Hanlon, Bernadette.Once the American Dream: Inner ring Suburbs of the Metropolitan United States. Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 2010.
  • Harris, Richard and Robert Lewis. “Constructing a Fault(y) Zone: Misrepresentations of American Cities and Suburbs, 1900–1950.” Annals of the Association of American Geographers 88, no. 4 (1998): 622–41.
  • Hayden, Dolores. Building Suburbia: Green Fields and Urban Growth, 1920–2000. New York: Pantheon Books, 2003.
  • Henderson, Susan. “Llewellyn Park, Suburban Idyll.” Journal of Garden History 7, no. 3 (July–September 1987): 221–43.
  • Hise, Greg. Magnetic Los Angeles: Planning the Twentieth-Century Metropolis. Johns Hopkins University Press, 1997.
  • Hope, Andrew. "Evaluation the Significance of San Lorenzo Village, A Mid-20th Century Suburban Community." CRM: The Journal of Heritage Stewardship 2 (Summer 2005): 50–61.
  • Hope, Andrew. "Evaluation the Significance of San Lorenzo Village, A Mid-20th Century Suburban Community." CRM: The Journal of Heritage Stewardship 2 (Summer 2005): 50–61.
  • Jackson, John Brinckerhoff. Discovering the Vernacular Landscape. Yale University Press, 1984.
  • Jacobs, Jane. Dark Age Ahead. Random House, 2004.
  • Kargon, Robert Hugh and Arthur P. Molella. Invented Edens: Techno-Cities of the Twentieth Century. MIT Press, 2008.
  • Katz, Bruce and Robert E. Lang, editors. Redefining Urban and Suburban America: Evidence from Census 2000. Brookings, 2003.
  • Katz, Peter, editor. The New Urbanism: Toward an Architecture of Community. Afterward by Vincent Scully. McGraw–Hill, 1994.
  • Kay, Jane Holtz. Asphalt Nation: How the Automobile took over America, and How We Can Take it Back. Crown Publishers, 1997.
  • Keating, Ann Durkin. Building Chicago: Suburban Developers and the Creation of a Divided Metropolis. Ohio State University Press, 1988.
  • Kelly, Barbara. Expanding the American Dream: Building and Rebuilding Levittown. State University of Albany Press, 1993.
  • Low, Setha. Behind the Gates: Life, Security, and the Pursuit of Happiness in Fortress America. New York: Routledge, 2003.
  • Lukez, Paul. Suburban Transformations. New York: Princeton Architectural Press, 2007.
  • Mattingly, Paul H. Suburban Landscapes: Culture and Politics in a New York Metropolitan Community. Johns Hopkins University Press, 2001.
  • McKenzie, Evan. Privatopia: Homeowner Associations and the Rise of Residential Private Government. New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press, 1994.
  • Morton, Marian. "The Suburban Ideal and Suburban Realities: Cleveland Heights, Ohio, 1860–2001." Journal of Urban History 28, no. 5 (September 2002) 671–98.
  • Nicolaides, Becky M. My Blue Heaven: Life and Politics in the Working-Class Suburbs of Los Angeles, 1920–1965. University of Chicago Press, 2002.
  • O'Connell, James C. The Hub's Metropolis: Greater Boston's Development From Railroad Suburbs to Smart Growth (MIT Press; 2013) 326 pages
  • O'Toole, Randall. "The Vanishing Automobile and Other Urban Myths" The Thoreau Institute.
  • Orfield, Myron. American Metropolitics: The New Suburban Reality. Brookings Institution Press, 2002.
  • Russell, James S. “When Suburbs Become Mega-Suburbs.” Architectural Record 191, no. 8 (August 2003): 76–81.
  • Rybczynski, Witold (November 7, 2005). "Suburban Despair". Slate.
  • Rybczynski, Witold. "How to Build a Suburb." The Wilson Quarterly 19 no. 3 (Summer 2005): 114–126.
  • Salamon, Sonya. Newcomers to Old Towns: Suburbanization of the Heartland. University of Chicago Press, 2003.
  • Schuyler, David. Apostle of Taste: Andrew Jackson Downing, 1815–1852. Johns Hopkins University Press, 1996.
  • Schuyler, David. The New Urban Landscape: The Redefinition of Form in Nineteenth-Century America. Johns Hopkins University Press, 1986.
  • Sies, Mary Corbin. “The City Transformed: Nature, Technology, and the Suburban Ideal, 1877–1917.” Journal of Urban History 14, no. 1 (November 1987): 81–111.
  • Sies, Mary Corbin. American Urban History: The Everyday Politics and Spatial Logics of Metropolitan Life.” Urban History Review/Revue d’histoire 32, no. 1 (Fall 2003): 28–42.
  • Sies, Mary Corbin. “Paradise Retained: An Analysis of Persistence in Planned, Exclusive Suburbs, 1880–1980.” Planning Perspectives 12 (1997): 165–91.
  • Smith, Albert C. & Schank, Kendra (1999). "A Grotesque Measure for Marietta". Journal of Urban Design 4 (3).
  • Stevens, William K. “Beyond the Mall: Suburbs Evolving into ‘Outer City.’” New York Times, November 8, 1987, E5.
  • Sweeting, Adam W. Reading Houses and Building Books: Andrew Jackson Downing and the Architecture of Popular Antebellum Literature, 1835–1855. University Press of New England, 1996.
  • Tatum, George B. and Elisabeth Blair MacDougall, editors. Prophet with Honor: The Career of Andrew Jackson Downing, 1815–1852. Dumbarton Oaks Colloquium on the History of Landscape Architecture. Washington, D.C.: Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection, 1989.
  • Walker, Richard and Robert Lewis. “Beyond the Crabgrass Frontier: Industry and the Spread of North American Cities, 1850–1950.” Journal of Historical Geography 27, no. 1 (January 2001): 3–19.
  • Warner, Jr., Sam Bass. Streetcar Suburbs: The Process of Growth in Boston, 1870–1900. 1962.
  • Wilson, Richard Guy. “Idealism and the Origin of the First American Suburb: Llewellyn Park, New Jersey.” American Art Journal (October 1979): 79–90.
  • Jackson, Kenneth T.. "All the World's a Mall: Reflections on the Social and Economic Consequences of the American Shopping Center." The American Historical Review 101 no. 4 (October 1996): 1111–1121.
  • Wright, Gwendolyn. Building the Dream: A Social History of Housing in America. Pantheon Books, 1981.
  • von Hoffman, Alexander. Local Attachments: The Making of an American Urban Neighborhood, 1850–1920. Johns Hopkins University Press, 1994.

Women, family, lifestyles and images

  • Clark, Jr., Clifford Edward. The American Family Home, 1800–1960. University of North Carolina Press, 1986.
  • Coon, David R. Look Closer: Suburban Narratives and American Values in Film and Television )Rutgers University Press; 2013) 269 pages; explores the critical image of suburbia in such films and TV shows as American Beauty, The Truman Show, Mr. & Mrs. Smith, Desperate Housewives, Weeds, and Big Love.
  • Friedan, Betty. The Feminine Mystique. Norton, 1963.
  • Marsh, Margaret. Suburban Lives. Rutgers University Press, 1990.
  • Marsh, Margaret. "Suburban Men and Masculine Domesticity.” American Quarterly 40, no. 2 (June 1988): 165–86.
  • Murray, Sylvie. The Progressive Housewife: Community Activism in Suburban Queens. University of Pennsylvania Press, 2004.
  • Putman, Robert D. Bowling Alone: The Collapse and Revival of American Community. Simon & Schuster, 2000.
  • Whyte, Jr., William H. The Organization Man. Simon and Schuster, 1956.
  • Wright, Gwendolyn. Moralism and the Model Home: Domestic Architecture and Cultural Conflict in Chicago, 1870–1913. University of Chicago Press, 1980


  • Avila, Eric. Popular Culture in the Age of White Flight: Fear and Fantasy in Suburban Los Angeles. Berkeley: University of California Press, 2004.
  • Fong, Timothy P. The First Suburban Chinatown: The Remaking of Monterey Park, California. Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1994.
  • Haynes, Bruce D. Red Lines, Black Spaces: The Politics of Race and Space in a Black Middle-Class Suburb. New Haven: Yale University Press, 2001.
  • Johnson, Ronald M. “From Romantic Suburb to Racial Enclave: LeDroit Park, Washington, D.C., 1880–1920.” Phylon 45, no. 4 (4th Quarter 1984): 264–70.
  • Kalita, S. Mitra. Suburban Sahibs: Three Immigrant Families and Their Passage from India to America. Rutgers University Press, 2003.
  • Kirp, David L., John P. Dwyer, and Larry A. Rosenthal Our Town: Race, Housing, and the Soul of Suburbia. Rutgers University Press, 1995.
  • Kruse, Kevin M. White Flight: Atlanta and the Making of Modern Conservatism. Princeton University Press, 2005.
  • Li, Wei. “Building Ethnoburbia: The Emergence and Manifestation of the Chinese Ethnoburb in Los Angeles’ San Gabriel Valley.” Journal of Asian American Studies 2, no. 1 (February 1999): 1–29.
  • Lipsitz, George. The Possessive Investment in Whiteness: How White People Profit from Identity Politics. Temple University Press, 1998.
  • Moore, Shirley Ann Wilson. To Place Our Deeds: The African American Community in Richmond, California, 1910–1963. University of California Press, 2000.
  • Orser, W. Edward. “Secondhand Suburbs: Black Pioneers in Baltimore’s Edmondson Village, 1955–1980.” Journal of Urban History 10, no. 3 (May 1990): 227–62.
  • O’ Mara, Margaret Pugh. “Suburbia Reconsidered: Race, Politics, and Prosperity in the Twentieth Century.” Journal of Social History 39, no. 1 (Fall 2005): 229–44.
  • Pattillo-McCoy, Mary. Black Pickett Fences: Privilege and Peril among the Black Middle Class. University of Chicago Press, 1999.
  • Self, Robert O. American Babylon: Race and the Struggle for Postwar Oakland. Princeton University Press, 2003.
  • Sugrue, Thomas J. The Origins of the Urban Crisis: Race and Inequality in Postwar Detroit. Princeton University Press, 1996.
  • Taylor, Jr., Henry L. “The Building of a Black Industrial Suburb: The Lincoln Heights, Ohio.” Thesis, State University of New York at Buffalo, 1979.
  • Vicino, Thomas J. Transforming Race and Class in Suburbia: Decline in Metropolitan Baltimore. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2008.
  • Weise, Andrew. Places of Their Own: African American Suburbanization in the Twentieth Century. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 2004.
  • Weise, Andrew. “Black Housing, White Finance: African American Housing and Home Ownership in Evanston, Illinois, before 1940.” Journal of Social History 33, no. 2 (Winter 1999): 429–60.
  • Weise, Andrew. “Places of Our Own: Suburban Black Towns before 1960.” Journal of Urban History 19, no. 3 (1993): 30–54.
  • Wilson, William H. Hamilton Park: A Planned Black Community in Dallas. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1998.

Environment and geography

  • Blake, Peter. God’s Own Junkyard: The Planned Deterioration of America’s Landscape. New York: Holt, Rinehart and Winston, 1964.
  • Jindrich, Jason, “Suburbs in the City: Reassessing the Location of Nineteenth-Century American Working-Class Suburbs,” Social Science History, 36 (Summer 2012), 147–67.
  • Kunstler, James Howard. The Geography of Nowhere: The Rise and Decline of America's Man-Made Landscape. Simon and Schuster, 1993.
  • Rome, Adam Ward. The Bulldozer in the Countryside: Suburban Sprawl and the Rise of American Environmentalism. New York: Cambridge University Press, 2001.
  • Winkler, Robert. Going Wild: Adventures with Birds in the Suburban Wilderness. Washington, D.C.: National Geographic, 2003.


  • Dreir, Peter, John Mollenkopf, and Todd Swanstrom. Place Matters: Metropolitics for the Twenty-first Century. University of Kansas Press, 2002.
  • Gans, Herbert J. The Levittowners: Ways of Life and Politics in a New Suburban Community. New York: Pantheon, 1967.
  • Lassiter, Matthew D. "The New Suburban History II: Political Culture and Metropolitan Space.” Journal of Planning History 4, no. 1 (February 2005): 75–88.
  • Lassiter, Matthew D. The Silent Majority: Suburban Politics in the Sunbelt South. Princeton, N.J: Princeton University Press, 2006.
  • Lassiter, Matthew D. “Suburban Strategies: The Volatile Center in Postwar Politics.” In The Democratic Experiment: New Directions in American Political History, edited by Meg Jacobs, William J. Novak, and Julian E. Zelizer, 327–49. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2003.
  • McGirr, Lisa. Suburban Warriors: The Origins of the New American Right. Princeton University Press, 2001.
  • Oliver, J. Eric. Democracy in Suburbia. Princeton University Press, 2001.
  • Teaford, Jon C. City and Suburb: The Political Fragmentation of Metropolitan America, 1850–1970. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1979.


  • “The New Suburban History”. H-Urban. Available online at H-Urban discussion sparked by Amanda I. Seligman’s December 2003 comments on her fall 2003 course.
  • Kruse, Kevin M, and Thomas J. Sugrue, editors. The New Suburban History. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2006.
  • Seligman, Amanda I. “The New Suburban History”. Journal of Planning History 3, no. 4 (November 2004): 312–33.
  • Sies, Mary Corbin. "Beyond Scholarly Orthodoxies in North American Suburban History", Journal of Urban History 27, no. 3 (March 2001): 355–61.

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