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Redesigning the American Dream: The Future of Housing, Work and Family Life Paperback – August 17, 2002

3.6 out of 5 stars 7 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

“Essential reading for architects, planners, and public officials...just as relevant today as it was nearly 20 years ago.” (Ellen Louer - ArchNewsNow.com)

About the Author

Dolores Hayden, professor of architecture and American studies at Yale, writes about the politics of design.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company; 2 edition (August 17, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0393730948
  • ISBN-13: 978-0393730944
  • Product Dimensions: 6.2 x 0.8 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #241,362 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Dolores Hayden teaches popular courses on the American landscape at Yale University and has been the subject of features in the New York Times, the Boston Globe, and on The Diane Rehm Show. A leading historian of American places and the politics of design, she has written six award-winning books that engage readers interested in how Americans have shaped their landscapes, towns, and buildings. Redesigning the American Dream received an American Library Association Notable Book Award for nonfiction.

Hayden is also a widely published poet. Her newest poetry collection is Nymph, Dun, and Spinner, published in November 2010.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
This is the best book about architecture that I ever read. Although I am not a feminist, it revealed to me the relationship between a building and the society that produced it -- a revelation that seven years at architecture schools (Yale and Princeton) did not provide. Any designer who want to design for another person needs to understand the hidden cultural codes that influence their creation of a built environment. Reading this book was the best way for me to understand what impact social biases can have in design.
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Format: Paperback
This is a fantastic book. Her historical research and insight are excellent. It is a bit dated, given that the text is from 1984 and the bulk of the sources were from the 1970's and previous, but that is the benefit of good scholarship, a text can remain relevant even with the passage of time. I actually think the format of the book and the ideas in the book are superior and better developed than in her more recent book "Building Suburbia", which at times feels like a conglomeration of economic data for a statistics conference. Both books, though, are wonderful. I highly suggest this book to get an excellent historical view of housing and urbanism.
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Format: Paperback
One of my favorite book, very thought provoking introduction to the intersection of gender space and power.
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Format: Paperback
I re-read some of the chapters of this book, hoping to be able let her argument convince me that the way our homes are currently designed and geographically situated are founded on a sexist world view, creating significant detriment to society. I am not certain she was much help though. This is a pretty serious flaw since I am sympathetic to her thesis. Her arguments in support of her thesis are disjointed and use out of date information.

One interesting feature of the book is that, where other authors would at most provide a couple alternatives or one encompassing school of thought as a solution, she briefly traces scores of possible alternatives. Most are only briefly mentioned, enough maybe to urge the reader to search out more information elsewhere.
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