Since the mid-1990s Ireland has experienced an extraordinary phase of economic and social development. Housing estates have mushroomed around towns and cities, most notably around the environs of Dublin. Seeking to understand the impact of these recent developments, Corcoran, Gray, and Peillon initiated the New Urban Living study, a detailed research project focused on four suburbs of Dublin. ""Suburban Affiliations"" represents the culmination of that research, offering an invaluable contribution to the study of suburbanization and to our understanding of the process of social change that has come to Ireland. Challenging the mostly negative assessment that has been made of the suburban social fabric, the authors argue that residents of suburban estates are not disoffiliated; rather, they are connected with the place they live and with each other in many different ways. The book maps the nature, quality, and focus of these affiliations, analyzing the ways in which suburbs differ from one another. The authors consider whether the Irish suburbs exhibit indigenous or European qualities, or whether they are an extension of a globalizing American suburban frontier. Employing a case study approach, they provide rich insight into how those who live in the suburbs feel about their surroundings. At the same time, the book as a whole develops a universal narrative that coheres around the notion of suburban affiliations.
Mary P. Corcoran and Michel Peillon are professors of sociology at the National University of Ireland, Maynooth. Jane Gray is a senior lecturer at the National University of Ireland, Maynooth. All are research associates of the National Institute of Regional and Spatial Analysis.