Lake Douglas Contributes Chapter to The Pleasure Garden, from Vauxhall to Coney Island

Associate professor Lake Douglas of LSU’s Robert Reich School of Landscape Architecture contributed a chapter to The Pleasure Garden, from Vauxhall to Coney Island published in 2013 by the Penn Studies in Landscape Architecture series of the University of Pennsylvania Press. Edited by Jonathan Conlin, senior lecturer at the University of Southampton, the book provides the first book-length study of the attractions and interactions of the pleasure garden from the opening of Vauxhall in 17th-century London to the amusement parks of the early 20th century in England and America.

Nine chapter-length essays contributed by musicologists, art historians, and scholars of urban studies and landscape design explore the mutual influences of human behavior and design within this open space typology: landscape, painting, sculpture, and even transient elements such as lighting and music tacitly informed visitors how to move within the space, what to wear, how to behave, and where they might transgress. Only two of the chapters discuss American examples, one of which was contributed by Douglas. His work explores pleasure garden examples in 19th-century New Orleans and demonstrates their importance as both a venue of social interaction among diverse communities and as a previously ignored landscape typology influential in the evolution of open space uses in American landscape history.

Douglas is Robert S. Reich Teaching Professor and serves as undergraduate coordinator at LSU’s Robert Reich School of Landscape Architecture in the College of Art & Design.