Dogs and the making of the American state: voluntary association, state power, and the politics of animal control in New York City, 1850–1920

TitleDogs and the making of the American state: voluntary association, state power, and the politics of animal control in New York City, 1850–1920
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2012
AuthorsWang, J
JournalJournal of American History (Bloomington, Ind.)
Volume98
Pagination998-1024
ISBN Number0021-8723
KeywordsAnimal control, Associations, Business enterprises, Cities, Conflict, Dogs, Economic aspects, Economic development, History, Methods, Planning, Public policy, Public-private sector cooperation, Rabies, United States
Abstract

  Using the history of canine animal control in New York City in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, Wang examines how a fluid public-private boundary constituted a normal part of American governance. This world of blended public-private relations–which allowed ostensibly private organizations to carry out public governmental functions–has persisted alongside the twentieth-century expansion of the state and continues to shape the exercise of public policy today. Indeed, contemporary examples such as Halliburton and military outsourcing may be but a few steps removed from the history of dogs and their regulation in the American city.

Journal of American History