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Date of Award

Fall 2011

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department

History

Supervisor

Richard Harris

Co-Supervisor

Michael Gauvreau

Language

English

Committee Member

Ruth Frager

Abstract

The thesis offers an interpretive account of the formation of a field of struggle relating to low-income housing in Toronto during the Depression. The stakes in the struggle are established by showing how rival authorities competed for influence over the definition of a housing problem and promoted new state projects of slum clearance, district redevelopment, public housing, and neighbourhood rehabilitation. A particular contribution of the research is to link interventions made to direct state development with the production and reproduction of spatially constituted social structures of Toronto. Through the reconstruction of the form and trajectory of a local housing market using oral histories, archived commentaries, photographic and quantitative sources, practices of housing provision are connected with patterns of service that contributed to class relations in the city.

McMaster University Library

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