'God’s Golden Acre for Children': Pastoralism and Sense of Place in New Suburban Communities

Corcoran, Mary (2010) 'God’s Golden Acre for Children': Pastoralism and Sense of Place in New Suburban Communities. Urban Studies, 47 (12). pp. 2537-2554. ISSN 0042-0980

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This paper is based on an empirical case study of four suburbs in the Dublin city hinterland. It is argued that pastoral ideology plays an active role in constituting these new suburbs and helps to inculcate a sense of place. This sense of place in turn helps to cement social embeddedness which acts as a bulwark against isolation and alienation. Pastoral ideology is invoked by suburbanites even when the pastoral dimension of the suburb is under threat or has disappeared. The village or ‘main street’ acts as an important anchor for new suburban residents as does the surrounding ‘rural’ landscape and their own collective memories. However, the study reveals a gap between how some newer suburbs are represented and imagined, and how they are experienced in everyday life. This raises questions about the long-term viability of suburbs that lack a sense of place.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: suburbs; pastoralism; sense of place; Ireland; Leixlip; Lucan; Ratoath; Mullingar; Greater Dublin; suburban development;
Academic Unit: Faculty of Social Sciences > Sociology
Item ID: 8959
Identification Number: 10.1177/0042098009359031
Depositing User: Prof. Mary Corcoran
Date Deposited: 06 Nov 2017 16:37
Journal or Publication Title: Urban Studies
Publisher: Sage Publications
Refereed: Yes

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