Event Title

Searching For Utopia in Postwar British Urban Planning

Location

King Building 123

Start Date

4-27-2018 2:00 PM

End Date

4-27-2018 3:20 PM

Abstract

My project examines the intellectual discourse surrounding urban planning in postwar Britain. Specifically, I discuss what were known as “new towns”, communities planned by experts that were meant to decentralize larger cities, help solve the massive postwar housing crisis, and modernize Britain. Experts in architecture, public health, economics, and the emerging field of urban sociology came together to design communities that would be economically independent, architecturally pleasing, and promote new types of social relations. I examine new towns in conjunction with other postwar attempts to build an ideal society such as the establishment of the welfare state and the United Nations. I analyze articles from academic journals, secondary sources, and contemporary newspaper and magazine articles about new towns to determine how the intellectual discourse shifted in the 1970s as the towns proved less successful than initially predicted and the public and government became disenchanted with the possibility of creating an ideal society.

Keywords:

new towns, urban studies, postwar, Great Britain, Europe, welfare state, community

Notes

Session IV, Panel 11 - Modern | Europe
Moderator: Leonard Smith, Frederick B. Artz Professor of History

Major

History

Advisor(s)

Annemarie Sammartino, History

Project Mentor(s)

Tamika Nunley, History

This document is currently not available here.

Share

COinS
 
Apr 27th, 2:00 PM Apr 27th, 3:20 PM

Searching For Utopia in Postwar British Urban Planning

King Building 123

My project examines the intellectual discourse surrounding urban planning in postwar Britain. Specifically, I discuss what were known as “new towns”, communities planned by experts that were meant to decentralize larger cities, help solve the massive postwar housing crisis, and modernize Britain. Experts in architecture, public health, economics, and the emerging field of urban sociology came together to design communities that would be economically independent, architecturally pleasing, and promote new types of social relations. I examine new towns in conjunction with other postwar attempts to build an ideal society such as the establishment of the welfare state and the United Nations. I analyze articles from academic journals, secondary sources, and contemporary newspaper and magazine articles about new towns to determine how the intellectual discourse shifted in the 1970s as the towns proved less successful than initially predicted and the public and government became disenchanted with the possibility of creating an ideal society.