Little White Houses : How the Postwar Home Constructed Race in America. (Book, 2013) [WorldCat.org]
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Little White Houses : How the Postwar Home Constructed Race in America.

Author: Dianne Suzette Harris
Publisher: Minneapolis : University of Minnesota Press, 2013.
Series: Architecture, landscape and American culture series.
Edition/Format:   Print book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
A rare exploration of the racial and class politics of architecture, Little White Houses examines how postwar media representations associated the ordinary single-family house with middle-class whites to the exclusion of others, creating a powerful and invidious cultural iconography that continues to resonate today. Drawing from popular and trade magazines, floor plans and architectural drawings, television  Read more...
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Details

Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: Dianne Suzette Harris
ISBN: 9780816654567 0816654565
OCLC Number: 841753484
Description: xi, 365 pages : illustrations ; 21 x 26 cm.
Contents: Introduction: Race and the Residential Sphere --
1. The Ordinary Postwar House --
2. Magazine Lessons: Publishing the Lexicon of White Domesticity --
3. Rendered Whiteness: Architectural Drawings and Graphics --
4. Private Worlds: The Spatial Contours of Exclusion and Privilege --
5. Household Goods: Purchasing and Consuming Identity --
6. Built-ins and Closets: Status, Storage, and Display --
7. The Home Show: Televising the Postwar House --
8. Designing the Yard: Gardens, Property, and Landscape --
Epilogue --
Acknowledgments --
Notes --
Index.
Series Title: Architecture, landscape and American culture series.

Abstract:

A rare exploration of the racial and class politics of architecture, Little White Houses examines how postwar media representations associated the ordinary single-family house with middle-class whites to the exclusion of others, creating a powerful and invidious cultural iconography that continues to resonate today. Drawing from popular and trade magazines, floor plans and architectural drawings, television programs, advertisements, and beyond, Dianne Harris shows how the depiction of houses and their interiors, furnishings, and landscapes shaped and reinforced the ways in which Americans perceived white, middle-class identities and helped support a housing market already defined by racial segregation and deep economic inequalities. After describing the ordinary postwar house and its orderly, prescribed layout, Harris analyzes how cultural iconography associated these houses with middle-class whites and an ideal of white domesticity. She traces how homeowners were urged to buy specific kinds of furniture and other domestic objects and how the appropriate storage and display of these possessions was linked to race and class by designers, tastemakers, and publishers. Harris also investigates lawns, fences, indoor-outdoor spaces, and other aspects of the postwar home and analyzes their contribution to the assumption that the rightful owners of ordinary houses were white. Richly detailed, Little White Houses adds a new dimension to our understanding of race in America and the inequalities that persist in the U.S. housing market.

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"Harris has contributed a major shift in perspective toward new and important ways to understand the history of postwar housing in the United States."-Antipode "Little White Houses establishes a Read more...

 
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