The Public Interest

To Suburbia, with Love

Marvin Bressler

Winter 1968

FOR a a decade following World War II, academic sociology, followed quickly by its vulgate tongue, middle-brow journalism, had an ingenuous view of suburbia which was summed up in such reproachful terms as “homogeneity,” “conformity,” “conservatism,” “matriarchy,” “rootless,” “status striving,” etc. It was the perspective derived from John R. Seeley and his colleagues in Crestwood Heights, a study of the Toronto area. It was the image given widespread currency by William H. Whyte in his description of Park Forest, Illinois, in The Organization Man.

Download a PDF of the full article.


to your National Affairs subscriber account.

Already a subscriber? Activate your account.


Unlimited access to intelligent essays on the nation’s affairs.

Subscribe to National Affairs.