Skip to main content
McMaster University Menu Search

Cooper Matthew, Professor Emeritus

Matthew Cooper

Professor Emeritus

Emeritus Faculty
Department of Anthropology


Research & Supervisory Interests

In recent years, my research interests have centred on two main themes: (1) the relations between communities and the larger social and economic processes that affect them and (2) how histories are created and represented, especially through the uses of space. My current research on the first theme concerns culture, space, and built form, especially in urban settings. Specifically, I have carried out research on housing and, to some degree, on planning in Canada. Some of the issues I have studied have to do with the relation between ideology and practice in building communities, the political economy of housing, housing and cultural difference, cultural aspects of design, and spatial discourses. The second thematic research area has to do with spatial practices, landscape, and historical representation. For several years I have been carrying out research on the social production of historic restoration sites and museums.  Finally, I am currently undertaking research on research ethics.


PhD Yale, 1970


3L03 - History of Anthropology

4B03 - Ethics in Anthropological Research



2002 Cyber-Utopias: Notes on How Historic American Communal Groups are Represented on the World Wide Web. Communal Societies 22:127-136.

2001 Representing Historic Groups Outside the Mainstream. Cultural Resource Management. 24(9):36-38.

2000 Consequences of Economic and Political Change for a Toronto Housing Cooperative, Canadian Journal of Urban Research 9(2): 52-68. (with M. Rodman)

1999 Spatial Discourses and Social Boundaries. In S. Low (ed.) Theorizing the City: the New Urban Anthropology, Piscataway, NJ: Rutgers University Press, 1999, pp 377-399.

1997 The Representation of Time at Two Shaker Village Sites. International Journal of Heritage Studies 3:157-167.

1995 Culture and Spatial Boundaries: Cooperative and Non-Profit Housing in Canada. Architecture & Behaviour 11(2): 123-138. (with M. Rodman)

1992 New Neighbours: A Case Study of Cooperative Housing in Toronto. Toronto: University of Toronto Press. (with M. Rodman)