This landmark study examines how the residents of an affluent suburb of New York City deal with conflict in their families, neighbourhoods, and community. Drawing on research, observation, and hundreds of in-depth interviews conducted over a twelve month period, the author provides a vivid portrait and atomized world in which open conflict is avoided and disputes are confined to families and, whenever possible, to individuals. This revealing portrait of an increasingly prevalent type of community is a disturbing insight that goes straight to the heart of modern America. The author looks at Hampton, a community where residents deal with family or communal stress primarily through resigned acceptance of short-term or permanent avoidance. Other responses include seeking professional help, anonymous complaints, mental illness, and suicide.