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Jackle, John A., Robert W. Bastian, and Douglas K. Meyer. Common Houses in America's Small Towns: The Atlantic Seaboard to the Mississippi Valley. Athens, GA: The University of Georgia Press, 1989.
Common Houses examines cultural diffusion through regional adaptions of "everyday" architectural forms. In an exhaustive study of twenty towns across the eastern United States, the authors address the hypothesis that dwelling types and characteristics vary systematically both within and between principal culture regions. For this enormous landscape, a detailed methodology was developed to analyze, compare, and classify 67 distinct dwelling types. Structures were defined by common denominators of form and categorized in five basic groups: the single pile, double pile, irregularly massed, bungalow, and ranch. Variations within types were examined through a variety of distinctive exterior features and interior design innovations. The greatest dichotomy, however, existed not between the four culture zones that informed the hypothesis (Southern New England, Midland Core, Upper South, and Lower South), but between the larger regions of North and South. A resulting fieldwork "typology" is contained in a glossary of structural forms and the detailed graphs, maps, and photographs that illustrate each chapter. The glossary, as well as the book itself, is intended to provide scholars with a guide for identifying and interpreting small town common dwellings. As a cultural landscape study, Common Houses also provides a starting point for more sophisticated and specialized interregional examinations of "everyday" housing forms. [L. Kennedy]