Design for a House for a Cosmopolite, by Antoine-Laurent-Thomas Vaudoyer, 1783. © Private Collection / Archives Charmet / Bridgeman Images.


Volume X, Number 1 | winter 2017


Castles in Air

By Lewis H. Lapham

The American democracy and dream are the building of castles in air. Whither goeth the one so goeth the other, these days up in smoke and the spout.



Home Loans

A history of seven homes—now for rent on Airbnb.



May 1 was codifed in 1820 as the date housing contracts in New York City expired or were renewed. Davy Crockett witnessed moving day in 1834. “It seemed a kind of frolic, as if they were changing houses just for fun,” he wrote. “Every street was crowded with carts, drays, and people. So the world goes. It would take a good deal to get me out of my log house, but here, I understand, many persons ‘move’ every year.” 

An American will build a house in which to pass his old age and sell it before the roof is on.

- Alexis de Tocqueville, 1840


LQ Podcast

#56 Doris Kearns Goodwin

The Pulitzer Prize–winning historian speaks with Lewis Lapham about her latest book, The Bully Pulpit. More