McMansions Meet the Mortgage Crisis

Another utopia seems to be biting the dust. The socialist kibbutzim of Israel have vanished or gone increasingly capitalist, and now the paranoid residential ideal represented by gated communities may be in serious trouble. Never exactly cool–remember Jim Carrey in The Truman Show“?–these pricey enclaves of privilege are becoming hotbeds of disillusionment.At the annual meeting of the American Anthropological Association in Washington last week, incoming association president Setha M. Lowe painted a picture so dispiriting that the audience guffawed in schadenfreude. The gated community residents Lowe interviewed had fled from ethnically challenging cities, but they have not managed to escape from their fear. One resident reported that her small daughter has developed a severe case of xenophobia, no doubt communicated by her parents:

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