The Making of Home

The Making of Home

The 500-year Story of How Our Houses Became Our Homes

Book - 2015
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Baker & Taylor
The New York Times best-selling author of The Victorian City examines the evolution of a house into that of a home over five centuries, detailing the development of household items like cutlery, furniture, plumbing and windows.

McMillan Palgrave

The 500-year story of how, and why, our homes have come to be what they are, from the critically acclaimed New York Times bestselling author of The Invention of Murder and The Victorian City

The idea that "home" is a special place, a separate place, a place where we can be our true selves, is so obvious to us today that we barely pause to think about it. But, as Judith Flanders shows in her most ambitious work to date, "home" is a relatively new idea.

In The Making of Home, Flanders traces the evolution of the house from the sixteenth to the early twentieth century across northern Europe and America, showing how the homes we know today bear only a faint resemblance to homes though history. What turned a house into a home? Why did northwestern Europe, a politically unimportant, sociologically underdeveloped region of the world, suddenly became the powerhouse of the Industrial Revolution, the capitalist crucible that created modernity? While investigating these important questions, Flanders uncovers the fascinating development of ordinary household items--from cutlery, chairs and curtains, to fitted kitchens, plumbing and windows--while also dismantling many domestic myths.

In this prodigiously researched and engagingly written book, Flanders elegantly draws together the threads of religion, history, economics, technology and the arts to show not merely what happened, but why it happened: how we ended up in a world where we can all say, like Dorothy in Oz, "There's no place like home."


The 500-year story of how, and why, our homes have come to be what they are, from the New York Times bestselling and critically acclaimed author of The Invention of Murder and The Victorian City

Baker
& Taylor

Examines the evolution of the house across Northern Europe and America over the past five centuries, discussing how dwellings became a separate and special place and detailing the development of household items like cutlery, furniture, plumbing, and windows.

Publisher: New York : Thomas Dunne Books/St. Martin's Press, 2015
Edition: First U.S. edition
ISBN: 9781250067357
Branch Call Number: 392.3609 F6138m 2015
Characteristics: xii, 346 pages : illustrations (chiefly color) ; 25 cm

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ezhurbin Jun 22, 2016

The book traces the evolution of European and American homes-both physically and conceptually-from 16th to 20th centuries. The read is pretty fascinating, dense with details and I've learned some interesting trivia facts, but at times, the book is didactic and dry. I read it on Kindle, so the illustrations were separate from the text and you have to go back and forth to see that is described, which is irritating. However, i think the book will benefit from having more illustrations to make it more engaging for the reader, especially since it describes some architectural styles and goods that I've never heard of, and it would be nice to see the pictures of what is described, instead of searching for it myself. Overall, it's more of an academic, but still interesting read about the development of physical and emotional attributes of a home.

p
pianomarket
Feb 07, 2016

Interesting observations that might have been more convincing had the author narrowed the focus on a specific country, then one could trace the evolution of home within that culture. Also many of the statements are debatable. For example, the typical housewife from the 1940's with the latest in appliances is said to spend more time on housework than her grandmother did at the turn of the century. I would have thought that there was more leisure time in the 1940's for the typical housewife.

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