A few college courses begin to acknowledge the role of bedroom communities in American life
Increasingly, if still a bit disdainfully, academia is beginning to pay attention to the 'burbs, home for years now to at least half of all Americans.
"Emerging" is the assessment Robert E. Lang gives to suburban studies on most college campuses. He's the founding director of the Metropolitan Institute on Virginia Tech's satellite campus in Alexandria, Va. The institute is one of a handful of academic think tanks that have sprung up around the country in recent years - including in Maryland - that study suburbia as well as cities.
"Places like Fairfax, that's where the future is made or broken," declares Lang, who calls himself "a student of the suburbs."
The outer Washington suburbs where Lang lives are typical of what he calls "mega" counties that are transforming the American landscape - huge, rapidly growing communities with no towns or cities at their core.
Compared with cities, suburbs still get little respect as a topic for serious study on many campuses, except perhaps as examples of the pathology of American society. Getting a bachelor's degree in suburban studies might be years away - though one can pick up a minor at George Mason University, a commuter-oriented school in Washington's Virginia suburbs.
comments powered by Disqus
- Joan Baez, Sly Stone, Steve Martin, Ben E. King -- all honored by the Library of Congress
- StoryCorps to Launch Global Expansion With $1M TED Prize
- Hofstra Event Looks at Bush Presidency
- Did Israel steal uranium from a town in Pennsylvania in the 1960s?
- Sequel to Nelson Mandela's Long Walk to Freedom to be published next year
- OAH denounces anti-gay legislation signed by Indiana governor
- Emory’s Leslie Harris says we should remember the racist roots of American colleges as we think about what went wrong at OU and other schools
- Stanford historian looks to the U.S. Postal Service to map the boom and bust of 19th-century American West
- U.S. historian denounces Japanese scholars' statement over wartime sexual slavery
- Timothy V Johnson Named Head of Tamiment Library