Book

From Sun Cities to the Villages

Judith Ann Trolander

Published by University Press of Florida

Published in print May 2011 | ISBN: 9780813036045
Published online September 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780813038988 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5744/florida/9780813036045.001.0001
From Sun Cities to the Villages

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Youngtown, Arizona, opened in 1954 and was the first development community to have a minimum age requirement (then 65) and to ban underage children as permanent residents. Developer Del Webb unveiled Sun City six years later. Adjacent to Youngtown, it offered modest homes abutting a golf course. In the ensuing decades, active adult communities have proliferated, including Harold Schwartz's “The Villages” in central Florida, today the nation's single largest retirement community. For nearly 60 years, the success of these and similar communities have changed the image of retirees from frail, impoverished old people to energetic, well-off adults enjoying a resort-like lifestyle. While some experts predicted these communities would fail or undermine the obligations between generations, they are now firmly embedded as one possible extension of the American dream. This is a book-length history of the “active adult” lifestyle. Examining the origins, development, failures, and challenges facing these communities as the baby boomer population continues to age, the book offers a truly original defense of a sometimes controversial aspect of American life.

Keywords: Youngtown; Arizona; residents; Del Webb; Sun City; active adult communities; The Villages; Florida; retirement community; lifestyle; American dream; baby boomer; American life

Book.  368 pages.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Social and Cultural History

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Table of Contents

Introduction in From Sun Cities to the Villages

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Democratizing Wintering in the South in From Sun Cities to the Villages

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Del Webb's “Sun City” Concept in From Sun Cities to the Villages

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Creating Community in From Sun Cities to the Villages

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Proliferation and Standardization in From Sun Cities to the Villages

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An Active Adult Subculture in From Sun Cities to the Villages

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Assessment in From Sun Cities to the Villages

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Conclusion in From Sun Cities to the Villages

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