The Buell Hypothesis

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The Buell Hypothesis examines the cultural assumptions underlying the “American Dream” in the context of the foreclosure crisis, suburban sprawl, and the architectural public sphere. Taking the form of a screenplay, the book positions the American Dream as an all-too familiar “film” that can only be sufficiently rethought by shifting the conversation toward a philosophical debate about its most entrenched underpinnings. It includes a series of case study sites, selected using a combination of quantitative and qualitative criteria, that are representative of the challenges facing municipalities nationwide. Each of these examples offers a somewhat different context in which radical and thoughtful ways of testing the hypothesis in its most basic form—change the dream and you change the city—can be found.