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Curse of the Starving Class Historical Context

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Historical Context

Urban Sprawl

As a country whose greatest natural resource has always been its seemingly endless supply of land and space, the United States settlement and development has generally followed the same pattern. New land—Plymouth Rock, California, Alaska, or anywhere in between—is settled and cleared for farming or industry by rugged individualist pioneers; more people move near that newly desirable land, and towns spring up; the towns grow so big and encroaching that the rugged individualists feel crowded by city life (or are unable, economically, to survive) and move on to find new frontiers.

California, especially southern California, is perhaps the best laboratory to examine this development. When the Spanish first explored the area of Los Angeles and the San Gabriel and San Fernando Valleys, the region was arid, almost desert. Largescale irrigation beginning in the late nineteenth century "made the desert bloom," and soon...

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This section contains 503 words
(approx. 2 pages at 300 words per page)
Purchase our Curse of the Starving Class Study Guide
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Curse of the Starving Class from BookRags and Gale's For Students Series. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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