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A pioneer in landscape studies takes us on a tour of landscapes past and present to show how our surroundings reflect our culture. "No one who cares deeply about landscape issues can overlook the scores of brilliant insights and challenges to the mind, eye and conscience contained in Discovering the Vernacular Landscape. It is a book to be deeply cherished and to be read and pondered many times."--Wilbur Zelinsky, Landscape "While it is fashionable to speak of man as alienated from his environment, Mr. Jackson shows us all the ties that bind us to it, consciously or unconsciously. He teaches us to speak intelligently--rather than polemically or wistfully--of the sense of place."--Anatole Broyard, New York Times "This book is a vital and seminal text: do beg, borrow or buy it."--Robert Holden, Landscape Design (London) "Incisive and overpoweringly influential. It will probably tell you something about how you live that you've never thought about."--Thomas Hine, The Philadelphia Inquirer "No one can come close to Jackson in his unique combination of historical scholarship and field experience, in his deep knowledge of European high culture as well as of American trailer parks, in his archivist's nose for the unusual fact and his philosopher's mind for the trenchant, surprising question."--Yi-Fu Tuan
J.B. Jackson, a pioneer in the field of landscape studies, here takes us on a tour of American landscapes past and present, showing how our surroundings reflect important changes in our culture. Because we live in urban and industrial environments that are constantly evolving, says Jackson, time and movement are increasingly important to us and place and permanence are less so. We no longer gain a feeling of community from where we live or where we assemble but from common work hours, habits, and customs. Jackson examines the new vernacular landscape of trailers, parking lots, trucks, loading docks, and suburban garages, which all reflect this emphasis on mobility and transience; he redefines roads as scenes of work and leisure and social intercourse--as places, rather than as means of getting to places; he argues that public parks are now primarily for children, older people, and nature lovers, while more mobile or gregarious people seek recreation in shopping malls, in the street, and in sports arenas; he traces the development of dwellings in New Mexico from prehistoric Pueblo villages to mobile homes; and he criticizes the tendency of some environmentalists to venerate nature instead of interacting with it and learning to share it with others in temporary ways. Written with his customary lucidity and elegance, this book reveals Jackson's passion for vernacular culture, his insights into a style of life that blurs the boundaries between work and leisure, between middle and working classes, and between public and private spaces.
The author views landscaping as an expression of a way of life. This collection of essays is written for the general reader and features articles without footnotes. The subject matter ranges from disquisitions on ordinary houses, yards, farms, and farmsteads to notes on ecology and from the impact of automobile use, mobile homes, shopping centers, and rural and urban planning to philosophical arguments about the meaning of human space and arguments for and against preservation.
Essays examine the way we perceive landscape, the effect of gardens and cities of the past on the landscapes of the present, and the way American architecture has broken with tradition. Discussion relates the importance of space to relativism throughout time.
Synthesizes topics of contemporary scholarship of the American West. This work examines subjects ranging from the use of frontier rhetoric in Japanese American internment camp narratives to the emergence of agricultural tourism in the New West to the application of geographer J B Jackson's theories to vernacular or abandoned western landscapes.
How does knowledge of everyday environments foster deeper understanding of both past and present cultural life? Traditional studies in this field have been of rural life. Here, contributors explore aspects of the emergent field of urban cultural landscape studies--with the challenging issues of class, race, ethnicity, and subculture--to demonstrate the value of investigating the many meanings of ordinary settings. 67 illustrations.

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