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The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 86, July 1982 - April, 1983

Book Reviews

developed, and sustained by unabashed capitalists. The concept of city
as economic opportunity certainly applies to Dallas. Its vitality, suc-
cesses, and limitations have derived from civic boosterism and the pur-
suit of economic gain.
The organization of the book provides a good visual tour of the evo-
lution of Dallas's architecture, but does little to reinforce the major
thesis that economic forces shaped the physical city. The first three
chapters give a chronological rendering of downtown Dallas, while the
next four treat South, East, and North Dallas, and Oak Cliff, respective-
ly; the last chapter deals with the Dallas State Fair as a form of booster-
ism. What is missing in this format is a comprehensive treatment of
the connection between individual structures and the overall develop-
ment of the city. The reader needs a greater sense-visually and ana-
lytically-of the overall impact of Dallas's economic development on
the physical development of the city. To do this effectively requires
attention not only to the homes of the well-to-do (which make up the
majority of the photographs of private residences), but to slums,
working-class housing, and commercial and industrial areas. This is a
difficult task to be sure. As the author suggests, photographic documen-
tation is limited. Nonetheless, if the book is to be a true "photographic
chronicle of urban expansion," it needs to demonstrate more effective-
ly the author's claim that the influential citizens were most important
in shaping Dallas's physical environment.
Criticisms aside, McDonald has made an important contribution to
the sparse body of literature on urban Texas. As he states in his pref-
ace, one hopes this book will be a departure point for further study.
Texas A&M University MARTIN V. MELOSI
Women in Texas: Their Lives, Their Experiences, Their Accomplish-
ments. By Ann Fears Crawford and Crystal Sasse Ragsdale. (Bur-
net, Tex.: Eakin Press, 1982. Pp. xiii+394. Preface, illustrations,
index, $16.95.)
The publication of this attractive volume confirms the arrival of
Eakin Press as a serious publisher of fine Texana and gives readers yet
another worthy volume by two Texas cultural historians, each with
solid publication background, here teamed to "reclaim from memory
the reality that created a civilization" (p. xii). Beginning with a "Moth-
er of Texas" and ending with a First Lady, Women in Texas surveys
the lives of thirty significant Texans, arranged chronologically and se-
lected with some aim toward geographic, ethnic, and vocational repre-


Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 86, July 1982 - April, 1983. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. Accessed May 3, 2016.

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