The experience of suburban modernity explores how the adoption of new forms of private transport transformed inter-war suburban London. It shows how London's suburban middle classes used their newly found disposable income to enjoy driving, motorcycling and flying. The experience of suburban modernity demonstrates that these new practices were welcomed by many, but met resistance to change from those who were dismayed by the accidents that resulted from increased mobility and the aesthetic and cultural changes that were the consequence of Americanisation and suburban development.
The book is divided into three sections. In the first, Law considers each of the private transport technologies in turn: the car, the bicycle and motorcycle, and the aeroplane and shows how they contributed to a sense of suburban modernity. Secondly, he examines the infrastructure that supported these technologies and shows how they were interpreted in contested visions of the meaning of Englishness. Finally, Law describes a set of journeys that demonstrate a condition of suburban modernity. These include the roadhouse, a site of Americanisation and transgression, new mobile practices of consumption, the embodied experiences of driving in a modern way, and the disastrous consequences of air and car accidents.
This book will be welcomed by academics and students working in suburban studies, historical geography and inter-war British history and can also be enjoyed by anyone interested in the history of London
About the Author
Michael John Law is a Research Fellow at the University of Westminster
Table of Contents
1. Creating the single currency: the triumph of ideology over good sense
2. The builders of the European Union and their project: 1950-1992
3. France and Germany: the EU's odd couple
4. The flight from nationalism towards the elusive European identity
5. The steady retreat of democracy in the EU
6. Return to European strife via monetary union
7. A crisis with no end in sight
Conclusion: routes away from crisis