Gated communities

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Entrance to Bella Montagna, a gated community being constructed outside Austin, Texas. Lots are priced from $100K to $400K; houses must be at least 3000 square feet and have a tile roof and at least a three car garage.

Fountain outside the entrance to Bella Montagna

The growth of gated communities seems to many critics a perfect embodiment of the failure of suburban encounter with the other. Yet whether or not there are gates, the Other is not so easily eliminated even from suburbs; differences appear in frictions between the generations, and in mass culture and media that bring new attitudes and habits. Keeping the suburbs pure is a constant effort that constantly fails. The media and the Net can work around gates and walls, and if the effort to enforce conformity try to "gate" the media, the forbidden fruit beckons all the more alluringly.