Noah Kalina

Early in her career, landscape architect Louise A. Mozingo saw a stunning model of a site with “oak-studded meadows, juxtaposed bosques of trees, long allees traversing topography, and snaking willow-lined canals.” Described to her as “the American Versailles,” it turned out to be a suburban office project on the Texas prairie. The contrast between such resplendent grounds and the industrial and corporate behemoths situated on them forms the premise of her new book, Pastoral Capitalism: A History of Suburban Corporate Landscapes. We learn that, after World War II, three coterminous factors—urban decentralization, the separation of corporate management into separate facilities, and the popularity of the pastoral aesthetic—transformed grimly industrial headquarters into bucolic estates, none more influential than Eero Saarinen’s designs for the woodland headquarters of tractor manufacturer Deere & Co. • $32.95; MIT Press, September 2011