Western Literature Disciplinary Approaches

For the reasons of governmental policy and the unreliability and unavailability of source material noted above, in the past, practitioners of certain disciplines - such as economic geography - found it more possible to pursue their craft (albeit with inferior data) than did others such as anthropologists. Scholars with explicitly cultural interests never really bothered to explore the Chinese metropolis until recently. Urban anthropology, too, is a field that only appeared in China at the very...

Hollywood the Place and Icon

Hollywood originated in 1887 as a subdivision developed by a Kansas prohibitionist named Horace Henderson (Harvey) Wilcox. The name was sug gested by his wife Daieda, purportedly inspired through conversation with a woman passenger on a train bound for the East, who described her suburban Chicago summer home as Hollywood (Torrence 1979 25). Driven by the need for water, the development was annexed to the City of Los Angeles in 1910, which was then relatively water flush with arterial wells and...

Elites of Urban Governance

The elite concept moved onto the urban studies agenda with the community power debates of the 1950s and 1960s. Specifically, the elitist school (e.g., Hunter 1953) claimed a core group of business and political actors regularly and successfully promoted their interests through city government. The pluralist school (e.g., Dahl 1961) countered there were no urban elites, only interest groups who prevailed on certain issues but neutralized each other in the policy aggregate. Their debate...

South Africa under Apartheid

Day set aside for fieldwork. Advised not to visit black townships, but able to renew acquaintance with Crossroads (pumping out after heavy rain), and to see the amalgam of shacks, site-and-service schemes and formal housing making up Khayelitsha as it sprawls out to the south-eastern edge of the Cape Flats. This further reinforces the impression gained elsewhere, of a widening disparity in black housing. As the state relies increasingly on private provision, the (few)...

Epilogue

Every year Durban hosts a major surfing competition. Bronzed and bleached-haired beauties strut their stuff on daunting waves, and in hotel bars when the sun goes down. This is a very white event. Over the years, I can recall hardly any participants whose skin was naturally brown even if tempted onto the surf in the apartheid era, they would not have been able to cross the segregated white beach. But blacks do not entirely miss out many enjoy the spectacle and accompanying excitement. There are...

Conclusion

To contextualize the analytical framework I have sketched, I quote one of the first urban political economists to address the poststructural turn C ities are narrative objects. That is, a city is not like a person or a business corporation it is not a subject that can represent itself. Rather, cities are objects of representation. People have to describe their nature, document their past, and predict their future. (Beauregard 1993 188, emphasis added) Beauregard is right about cities' inability...

Hotspots versus Violent Youths The Theoretical Debate

Linkages between social inequality and crime have been subjected to speculation since the early days of criminology. It is necessary at this point to outline the evolution of the theoretical debate related to the correlation of the structural causes of inequality versus individual responsibilities leading to violence and crime in large cities (Hagan and Peterson 1995 55). Criminogenic places in American cities The early and influential theory of Clifford Shaw and Henry McKay (1942) on social...

Sophie Body Gendrot

A few years ago, when I was called by the French Republic to serve as a jury member in Paris, I went through a major life experience. It seems that most of my current research concerning notions of crime definition, social justice, and institutional responses to urban dilemmas has been shaped by this experience. Before it, I was just a political scientist with a deep suspicion of institutions. If I used the word police, I would frequently associate it with abuse and the word justice with denial...

Understanding the Sociospatial Forces of Multicentered Development

Perhaps the most frustrating aspect of the LA Schoolers' discourse is its failure to supply analytical depth. They describe but do not go beyond extolling the virtues of their own location as a place that exemplifies the new urban trends. Their superficiality is a direct consequence of their intentions. By purposely ignoring other urbanists they also ignore what other urbanists do and what they have been doing during the same period in our recent past, namely, studying and researching the...

Understanding the City

The beginning of the twenty-first century is an exciting time for those wanting to understand the city. There is a growing realization that the cultural turn, through its emphasis on meaning, identity and the politics of difference, for example, provides the cutting edge of urban research. At the same time the cultural turn has contributed to the fragmentation of urban studies and has had little impact on traditional urban investigations. When culturalist analyses of cities have directly...

The Indeterminacy of the Social

As explained earlier, urban studies' approaches in the critical political economy tradition have capably absorbed an analysis of cultural forms into a theory of social production of space. While clearly these approaches were concerned with the city as a force that shapes the everyday lives of urban dwellers, their main intent was to add much-needed complexity to an understanding of the structural forces that produce the city itself. An expansive notion of cultural processes - one that includes...

New York City

Commercial sex has long been a visible feature of the New York City landscape. From the mid-nineteenth century on, a parallel economy of sexual entertainment has operated symbiotically with the city's premier theater and entertainment district. The relationship was forged downtown by the 1850s and, as legitimate theater migrated uptown in pursuit of cheaper land, so too did the various forms of adult entertainment, from burlesque theater to prostitution. In the 1880s, the theater district had...

Morphing Manhattan From Silicon Alley to Times Square

Forces of development that the new media helped set in motion remain at work. Speculators are investing in chic areas in old industrial areas now associated with new media lifestyles (Holusha 2000). Some brokers say they are changing their maps, claiming that new submarkets are emerging while old place identities, such as the Garment district, are now anachronisms. The expanding Midtown and Downtown business districts seem to be on the verge of linking up with emerging centers in Brooklyn and...

Silicon Alley The Institutional Nexus

Silicon Alley originally referred to a corridor in Lower Manhattan that followed Broadway south from the Flatiron District through Greenwich Village and into SoHo the environs of artistic types drawn to old factory lofts and New York University. As of 1995 some 2,350 new media firms in New York City employed 18,300 workers (Indergaard and McInerney 1998). By 1999 the numbers had exploded to some 4,000 firms employing over 138,000 workers (PricewaterhouseCoopers 2000). Given Lower Manhattan's...

Bibliography

Amin, A. 2000 The economic base of contemporary cities. In G. Bridge and S. Watson (eds.), A Companion to the City. Oxford Blackwell, 115-29. -and Thrift, N. 1992 Neo-Marshallian nodes in global networks. International Journal of Urban and Regional Research 16 (4) 571-87. Anderson, D. 2000 The race for office space. TheStandard.Com, January 11, pp. 1-3. Aron, L.J. 2000a Web, retail surge earns full house for Midtown South. Crain's New York Business, January 17. -2000b Downtown re-emerges as...

Discourses of Return

In the mid-1990s, having completed my doctorate from the D-School, I returned to Bangalore, a city in which I had spent a few years as a teenager in the late 1970s and early 1980s, and began working at the Institute for Social and Economic Change. There were few sociologists there, most economists did serious quantitative and demographic work, and those concerned with the city tended to study issues of urban poverty and rural-urban migration. Through several projects on urban religiosity, I was...

Japanese Urban Ethnography

Luckily for would-be reviewers of the mass of ethnographic research on Japan published in the postwar period, there are two excellent benchmarks in the form of essays written by Kelly in the early 1990s, reviewing much of the work that had been done up to the end of the 1980s (Kelly 1991, 1993). I have surveyed the general literature on Japan following on from his 1991 paper elsewhere (Eades 2000), so here I will concentrate on the urban literature, which he discussed more specifically in his...

Connecting with the Bull Market

Before Silicon Alley's national contenders had resolved the relationship revenue problem their attention was diverted to the market for initial public offerings (IPOs) of stock a circuit that offered new media entrepreneurs the possibilities of gaining windfall amounts of resources, publicity, and or riches. In 1998 IPOs of stock by a handful of leading Internet firms and a rise in their stock values propelled the Internet to international prominence. The value of Amazon.com increased 638...

Islamic Reform The Origins of Modern Islamist Urban Movements

Historians have traced Islamic reform (islah) to seventeenth-century reactions to imperialism and Hindu Muslim syncretism. By the eighteenth century, Wahabbism, a radical, puritanical doctrine opposing rational reinterpretation of the Sharia as well as Sufi brotherhoods, unified Arabia under the Saudi family. In the twentieth century the latter used petroleum revenues, their control over pilgrimage sites (1924 5), and patronage of Muslim pilgrim-scholars to spread a Wahabbi ulama vision of...

The Role of Real Estate in the Production of the Multicentered Metropolitan Region

Driving from Santa Monica pier on the westernmost boundary of the Southern California region directly east on Interstate 10, housing developments begin to peter out after Redlands because of the sudden rise in elevation as the crumpled land zone of the San Andreas and its lesser faults tilts the earth, making it difficult to build. That drive is a distance of over 70 miles. But it is absurd to imply, as does the LA School, that this sprawling region of an automobile-oriented settlement space is...

The Legitimacy Crisis of the Postcolonial Secular State

To be sure, the petro-boom bust cycle and global restructuring undermined the legitimacy of the secular nationalist state even before the Iranian Revolution made Islamism a viable political option. Historically, ever since the rise of Ataturk's Turkey, Pahlavi's Iran, and Nasser's Egypt, the secular eth-nonationalist project spread very shallow roots in Muslim civil society. Indeed, secular nationalism never originated from below it was almost always a top-down, authoritarian project...

The State Socialist Period

In 1972 Castells argued that whereas the theory of the capitalist mode of production has been elaborated, at least in part (especially as far as its economic sphere is concerned) by Marx, in Capital, the theory of the socialist mode of production exists only in an embryonic state (1972 90). Hence, he argued, the term socialist lacked analytical power. Following this one might have expected that what came to be termed state socialist1 societies would be neglected by sociologists. In fact they...

Downplaying History

Scholars ignore history at their peril. Los Angeles is touted as the exemplary suburban, auto-era city. The automobile, in particular, is viewed as the generator of current spatial patterns, especially the sprawl of regional growth. The history of Los Angeles is not only quite different but is instrumental to an understanding of contemporary spatial processes in the CMSA. One hundred years ago, prior to the mass production of cars, the area in and around Los Angeles already had an extensive...

What Can Be Learned from the Critique of LA School Hype

Academics would prefer not to be harsh with their colleagues. After all, the key activity characterizing our profession is the serious advancement of knowledge. However, in the wake of the Chronicle's article and the obvious arrogant hype that it seeks to pass off in place of respectable scholarship, it was necessary to dissect the phenomenon more systematically. But what can be learned from this critique There is, in fact, a strong need to get away from the old vocabularies describing forms of...

Dorothy J Solinger and Kam Wing Chan

Chinese cities since socialism's emergence in 1949 have been more or less the creature of the state's designs more so, surely, in the decades when the doctrinal dicta of the state truly held sway (up through 1978), less so as that other great organizing principle, the market, came progressively to entrench itself in urban space. As a consequence, urban research on China has not been driven by trends and fads in scholarship so much as it has been shaped by the nature of China itself, as...

Situated Scripts

All explanatory representations of cities, despite claims about their universal applicability, are in fact always situated knowledges. This contradiction is nowhere more clearly expressed than in the case of the Chicago School of urban sociologists. Often treated as a universal spatial typology of the city, their famous concentric circle model was constructed from very specific field studies of a particular place and time. Specifically, their models of racialized ghetto formation and stages of...

Mark Gottdiener

If the Chronicle of Higher Education ran a story regarding a group of academics who claimed the moon was made of green cheese, no doubt there would be some responses that it could print from other academics both pro and con. It might even get a letter or two stating that someone was helped by the article because they hadn't really thought about that issue before. The Chronicle could then pat itself on the back and believe that it had done a genuine service in the interests of science. When it,...

Difference in Urban Analysis Theoretical Takes

An interest in difference has helped to write new or amended scripts for urban studies. Not least, it has been a significant part of what Ed Soja (1996 193) refers to as a new terrain of critical urban studies. This new terrain appeared not simply because of some epistemological imperative. Cities have changed as have the forces that structure them and the lives lived in them. As Soja notes To continue to approach the postmodern metropolis with the same analytic frameworks and confident...

The Future

What are the implications for future research on Chinese cities in the West, given the motivations and situational factors that have brought it to its present juncture One approach to such speculation is to look at the most recent scholarship and then extrapolate potential directions from it. If we follow this route, we might conclude, with Tang and Parish (2000), that China is marching along the same path that other industrializing, modernizing societies (such as Taiwan) have taken in the late...

Global Restructuring Petrodollars and the Rise of Neoliberal Regulation

Because nine of fourteen original OPEC states were Muslim-majority states, the relative equilibrium associated with secular nationalism and state regulation of economy and society fractured considerably during the petroleum boom. Rather than reviving national economic autonomy, however, the petroleum boom of 1973-4 proved to be the last gasp of state-centered economic development and the midwife of greater regulation by global markets and multilateral institutions, i.e., the International...

Radical Islamist Discourses Sayyid Qutb as Insurrectionary Theorist

Most Islamists pursue moderate, gradualist, and noninsurrectionary strategies. Sayyid Qutb (1906-66), however, became the theoretician of the radical, insurrectionist, zealous tendency in Islamism. Born in Assiut, southern Egypt, to a prosperous family and educated in Cairo, he worked as an inspector of education. In 1949, courtesy of American aid, he received a scholarship to study in Washington and California. Alienated by America's liberalism, alliance with Israel, and racism toward Arabs,...

Framing Muslim Movements in Urban Situations

We live in an intellectual moment when the complexity of the global Islamic revival renders it difficult to generalize about Muslim institutions, social movements, and discursive practices. While diversity and locality remain paramount features of Muslim cities, globalization has inadvertently nurtured transnational Muslim networks from the homeland of Islam and extended them into the web of interconnected world cities. Quite opportunistically, urban-based Muslim networks and insurrectionist...

Discursive Struggle The Emergence of Muslim Feminists

Despite the deep patriarchy of many Islamist discourses, structural transformations - literacy, education, media, participation in urban public space -have stimulated new gender discourses and new civil society groups. The discursive shift, together with the participation of Muslim women in urban public life (i.e., demonstrations in Iran), have, unintentionally to be sure, disrupted the male monopoly over interpreting the Islamist discourse. Leila Ahmed stresses how Muslim women hear a...

Comparative Perspectives Islamism Democracy and Urban Insurrection

The Egyptian Brothers' gradualist, pragmatic strategy, based upon mobilizing the cautious middle class, is widely replicated in the cities of Islamdom the Muslim Brotherhood in Jordan, PAS in Malaysia, Hamas in Algeria, Ghannoussi's MTI Nahda movement in Tunisia, Virtue Welfare in Turkey, and Wahid's NI in Indonesia (Kramer 1993, 1995 Salame 1994 Guazzone 1995 Hefner 2000). There is a crude correlation between the success of moderate Islamism and the national level of development and degree of...

The Role of Space in the Production of the Multicentered Region

A decentered space, which is no longer structured by forces dominating from the center, is a region that is subjected to locational competition in all its aspects. Within the multi-centered region space is important because there is locational competition and no single place is inherently valorized. In the past people would automatically travel downtown to the department stores of the central city in order to pursue retail shopping. Now people no longer view downtown as a magnet. They have...

Business Cycles Polarization and Urban Threats

According to the theory of relative deprivation, higher crime rates are experienced in cities and neighborhoods where low-income communities live in close proximity to high-income ones. This is precisely the configuration of global cities. The concentration of wealth and poverty in the same geographical area is more exacerbated in the American city, Sullivan observes, and it constitutes the precondition of street crime in the city (1991 225). Seeing others' wealth and possessions, the...

Conclusion An Elusive Complexity

The current politicization of the crime issue draws its success from complex processes. Social restructuring and rising crime rates allow politicians, the media, and public opinion spokespersons to take advantage of a global feeling of insecurity to pursue their own strategies. This manipulation is facilitated by a widespread perception of potential victimization (supported by the continuous flows of violent images) rather than by the witnessing of offenses. What is new is that elites, whose...

Elite Discourses in the Qualityoflife District

My setting is the coastal California communities of Santa Monica, Santa Barbara, and San Luis Obispo. My data come from roughly a hundred inter views conducted between 1996 and 2000 with new economy executives, local business leaders, and political activists in these three places as well as secondary sources. These places share two aspects that make them useful sites to examine discourses about new economy urban elites. First, they have witnessed recent growth in new economy sectors like...

Social Justice after Apartheid

Staying in a block of holiday flats on the sea front. This was the family home for some months more than twenty years ago, and part of my research strategy (if this is not putting it too grandly) is repeated visits to the same place to observe who is doing what, where, and with whom. The stretch of Marine Parade and its beach, which I can see from my balcony, once protected white space, is now integrated. African occupation is increasingly confident, young men gently...

Reconstructing Urban Elites in the New Economy

By new economy I refer to the recent ascendance of software design, the production of cultural content (for the entertainment industry, the World Wide Web, etc.), e-commerce, and the advanced professional services that facilitate these and more conventional sectors. Most growth coalitions view these sectors as desirable engines of economic development because their employees earn higher than average wages that trickle down into local economies, and because their virtual work creates relatively...

The Evolution of Research Redefining Urban Violence and its Potential Causes

Crime is what society decides it to be. The dangerous classes are defined arbitrarily by institutions in the same recurrent way as in the past. Labels were then given to the unmeltable, the scum, on one hand, and to ghettos, skid rows, and shantytowns on the other. The poor and the destitute have always been reproached for their irresponsible behavior and there is little difference in the way these pariahs were pointed out formerly and the way marginalized and socially excluded populations are...

Circuit Disconnects and Decay

The restructuring of real estate into high-value circuits reserved for dot-coms and corporations incorporated diverse places while displacing their commercial residents. In the wake of the market crash, many new media firms are themselves finding it difficult to remain connected with the new real estate circuits. Initially, the new media were lauded for recycling property abandoned by other industries. However, as their expansion accelerated the new media began to displace clusters of firms...

The Multicentered Form and the Interventionist State

It is often argued that metropolitan regions are a product of capital. Some writers, such as Harvey (1982, 1985a, 1985b, 1996) or Smith (1996) consider this factor exclusively as the determining force. Most of the LA School geographers follow suit (see the work of Scott, Storper, for example). Such economism is wrong. For this reason I like to begin discussions about the causes of contemporary urban development by focusing on the actions of the state, which are not always taken in the service...

Symbols Signs and Discourse

The aftermath of the political and social upheavals of 1968 prompted a dramatic critique of urban studies in the West and hastened along a paradigmatic shift in the epistemologies, theories, and methods of studying the city. This shift crystallized over time as a considerable body of scholarship linked various aspects of cities and their historical and contemporary formations to capitalist political economic processes. Influenced by Karl Marx's writings (and, to varying degrees, by Max...

Sexuality and Public Space

One might argue that the different approaches to sex-related entertainment in Las Vegas and New York reflect no more than fundamental economic imperatives rooted in each city's economic base. City builders in Las Vegas had to overcome serious natural disadvantages - from a remote location, to scorching desert heat, to an inadequate water supply - in order to establish a thriving economy. Against these odds they built a major city around a tourism-based economy that offered forms of...

City of Circuits

Proposing that places comprise an ensemble of forces, Molotch, Freudenberg, and Paulsen (2001 792) recently asked, how do unlike elements conjoin and what encourages the resulting combinings to persist Harvey and Zukin draw our attention to the role of circuits of capital and culture in a spatialized nexus of power. Using economic sociology I show Silicon Alley to be an institutional nexus for building and conjoining restricted circuits (Zelizer 2000) of capital and culture. In a burst of...

Online Consumer Circuits

Silicon Alley provides real spaces, grounded in a matrix of material and symbolic resources, for working out Internet business models. A challenge, which few start-ups or corporate units have solved, is creating ties with online con sumers that will bring in enough revenue to sustain the endeavor. Experiences of Silicon Alley's national contenders suggest that the creation of online circuits hinges on issues of user identity, interaction, and information. Of particular importance for power...

The Mnemonics of Space

The Sai Baba movement owes its origin to a nineteenth-century saint, Shirdi Sai Baba, closely identified with Sufi genealogies and other mendicant orders in the Deccan region of South Asia. According to various accounts, Sai Baba serendipitously arrived at Shirdi in 1854, a little village in Maharashtra, about sixteen years of age (Shri Sai Satcharita 1972).11 Shirdi had a few hundred houses 90 percent of the population were Hindu peasants and 10 percent were Muslims, who worked mainly as...

The Implications for Urban Theory

This rich empirical diversity in urban life raises a common question in urban studies what are the theoretical threads, if any, which can be used to tie it all together Since the industrial revolution, the nature of cities has changed so rapidly that theoretical paradigms are hardly able to catch up with the reality. The assumptions of the 1920s and 1930s that most cities looked like Chicago gave way to a realization in the 1950s that many of them were still pre-industrial. However,...

Discursive Shift The Iranian Revolution as Demonstration Effect

Despite their universality, structural factors alone fail to explain the tectonic discursive shift toward Islamism in the popular consciousness of Muslims living in cities. The pivotal event was the Iranian Revolution (1978-9) and its successful institutionalization as the Islamic Republic of Iran. Clearly, a classic urban insurrection directed against a corrupt, secular authoritarian regime, the revolution depended upon a multi-class coalition of nationalist, Marxist, and Muslim groups led by...

Circuits and Currencies of Urban Development

As the twenty-first century drew near the local media claimed that the new media was replacing Wall Street as the engine of the New York economy (Kanter and Messina 1999). The results of a NYNMA survey (Pricewater-houseCoopers 2000) were impressive one estimate showed that the number of new media workers in the city grew from 55,973 in 1997 to 138,258 in 1999, an increase of 82,285 (147 percent) (2000 29). A more conservative estimate (+63,048 jobs) still impresses, since other media sectors...

Urban Structural Processes Discourses and Movements

Our objective is to historicize and analyze the meaning and consequences of the unexpected shift from secular national to Islamic discourses, civil society groups, and social movements in Muslim-majority cities since the 1970s. We focus on Islamism and Islamists as distinguished from the broader and less politicized term, Islamic Islamist refers to the the modern, Western-educated, and highly urbanized groups rather than on traditional scholars, the ulama, or mystical brotherhoods, i.e., Sufi...

Muslim Women in Cities Gender Relations and New Islamic Dress

Thus far we have argued that rupturing events like the Iranian Revolution, the rise of political Islam, and the infusion of pragmatic Islamist institutions into civil society constitute a repositioning of Islamic discourses in the moral imagination of urban Muslims. Yet no issue is more significant than the impact of Islamism on gender relations in the public and domestic spheres. Regardless of Islamism's discursive fragmentation and obvious borrowing from Western-modernist narratives, no issue...

Urban Studies Notes

1 I would like to thank James Heitzman for creating the maps for this chapter and for his extensive comments. 2 For an account of the Delhi School of Economics that weaves together the personal and the institutional, see Kumar and Mookherjee (1995). 3 A representative but not exhaustive list of works on these themes includes Dahi-wale (1988) De Souza (1978) Fox (1969) Mahadev (1975) Majumdar ( 1960 1975) Pantham (1976) Pethe (1964) Ramu (1988) Rao (1974) Rosenthal (1976) Samaj (1958) Vidyarthi...

Leonard Nevarez

In this chapter, I engage the poststructural turn as an urban political economist to reassess one of urban studies' venerable topics, the urban elite. Older understandings of urban elites have not necessarily outlived their theoretical value, since urban economies and governance continue to be shaped as urban political economy has theorized, by individuals whose power derives from their relations to dominant social institutions. However, urban elites must be reevaluated in light of two...

Typical Multicentered Region

The LA Schoolers, in their effort to validate their own address, have things backwards. Understanding contemporary urbanism requires us to distance ourselves from any one place and, instead, to appreciate the abstract settlement patterns of the new spatial form. We do need an ideal type, but, as the simplest understanding of that theoretical concept dictates, there is no actually existing place that can be tendered as the model. Instead, all areas should be compared with the tendencies and...

Urban Sociology in India Sociology of the Indian City

In the mid-1980s, Delhi was a city recovering from several wounds. In 1984, Prime Minister Indira Gandhi had been assassinated by her Sikh guards after she ordered the storming of the Golden Temple in Amritsar, Sikhism's most sacred shrine, to repress Sikh separatists who were using the temple as a base for their operations. Both events unleashed a spiral of violence, including the killing of many Sikhs in Delhi and the destruction of their property, followed by months of anguish and terror....

Alexander J Reichl

Given the recent preoccupation in urban studies with the cultures of cities (Zukin 1995), one might be forgiven for concluding that urban culture is a discovery of the late twentieth century - or, at the least, that culture has just reappeared in cities after a long period of dormancy. There is a grain of truth here, in the sense that the renewed attention to the cultural realm reflects important transformations in the urban landscape over recent decades. The spectacular theme-park places, a la...

Three Contemporary Scripts about Cities

Urban studies has long invested in globally scoped explanations of urbanization and universally applicable models of urban form. Wallerstein's world systems theory and its legacy of theories of globalization is foundational, particularly its designation of cities as of First or Third Worlds, North or South. These theories absorbed cities across the globe into an integrated developmental narrative. In this narrative, cities come to be known for their place in a global urban hierarchy produced by...

The Depoliticization of Globalization in Castells

It is precisely the shift of focus away from the nature of, and the relationships among, social groups that marks Castells's trajectory. It is a move that suppresses the political, in the broad sense of the dynamic between the exercise of power and the resistance to it, and moves toward a determinism that undermines the relevance of political action. Power and conflicts over power disappear from view 17 classes, when they appear, have a very subordinate role. Capitalism is conflated with...

Divided Spaces Ethereal Bodies

Sathya Sai Baba Empower Women

Between 1918 and 1950, small gatherings of devotees who had visited Shirdi, usually through their connections with Maharashtra as businessmen or through their employment in the army or bureaucracy, were found in many urban centers of South India. After 1950, some of these groups, usually devotional song and prayer communities in people's homes, grew into large temples. A typical case is Bangalore, where there are four temples dedicated to Shirdi Sai Baba affiliated to the All-India Sai Samaj....

Theorizing the Political Value of Public Space

The issue of public space is prominent in poststructuralist urban studies, which view the built form as a causal force shaping social relations. Those who argue the value of public space fall into two general camps (see Kilian 1998). The first, following Jane Jacobs (1961), maintains that a sense of trust and security in a city neighborhood is built on the casual, routine contact that occurs naturally on the sidewalks and in the shops of multi-use areas. Problems of crime and disorder arise...

Utopian Spaces Cosmic Bodies

Sometime between Shivamma Thayee's return to Bangalore after 1917 and Narasimha Swami's epiphany at Shirdi in 1936, another figure emerged within the charismatic tradition of Shirdi Sai Baba who was to have an even more significant impact on Bangalore. Sathya Sai Baba was born in 1926 as Sathya Narayana Raju in Puttaparthi village in Andhra Pradesh.15 Sathya seems to have had a fairly normal childhood, although biographers and oral accounts claim a number of mysterious events at the time of his...

The Role of Culture Symbols in the Production of the Built Environment

Quite obviously, as an urban scholar I have taken the claims of the LA School personally. But I have many reasons for doing so. Perhaps the one most current is the way LA Schoolers write about a new, postmodern city as exemplified by Los Angeles. Their city-centric discourse aside, can there be anything more exemplary of postmodernism in this regard than Las Vegas (Gottdiener et al. 1999) Based as it is on the casino-gambling economy, Las Vegas is nothing if not the true exemplar of the...

The Relevance of Japanese Urbanism for East and Southeast Asia

Looked at in this way, there is no such thing as the Pacific Asian city, though the kinds of processes which have been described for Japan may also be observed in relation to other cities within the region as well (Ginsburg et al. 1991 Lo and Yeung 1996, 1998 Watters and McGee 1997). In this final section I will consider some of the most important of these, which together form the focus of much of the most interesting research currently taking place in the region and which are likely to remain...

Postcolonialism Transnationalism and Globalization

Analytical interest in social difference and cultural heterogeneity has intensified as scholars whose work intersects or overlaps with postcolonial and transnational studies have turned their gaze to the study of the city. Postcolonial and transnational studies have had a profound influence upon contemporary urban studies, prompting a critical interrogation of many of the field's earlier theoretical assumptions. Postcolonialism and trans-nationalism represent a multiplicity of disciplinary...

The Ideological Objectification and Valorization of Physical Location

Essential to LA Schoolers like Dear and Soja is the claim that the vast developing area east of Los Angeles city limits be included conceptually in their discursive referent the Los Angeles area. However, this is simply an ideological construction. In truth, the Southern California region around Los Angeles comprises three metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs) LA Long Beach, Riverside San Bernardino, and Orange County. The area to the east, the one which Michael Dear is fond of flying over in...

Dream Palaces and Mass Spectacles

The prosperity of the 1920s had stimulated moviegoing, which in turn spurred film production and the construction of motion picture exhibition places. A succession of ostentatious Hollywood movie palaces were built in this era, including Sid Grauman's Million Dollar, Metropolitan, Egyptian, and Chinese Theaters, the Warner Brothers Theater, and the Hollywood Pantages. These spectacular pleasure palaces built upon a formula that theater manager Samuel Roxy Rothafel (formerly Rothapfel) had...

Sophie Watson

This chapter charts shifts in notions of the public city, be it in the form of public resources, public space, or public sphere. Using feminist work and an ethnographic study of Orthodox Jews in North London as two lenses through which this complicated and complex terrain can be focused, I argue that the idea of the public in its various guises has been subject to a series of radical transformations over the last two decades. Partly this is a result of a markedly different political climate,...

Symbols and Culture in Urban Theory

Milla Alihan (1938) is sometimes credited with initiating the sociocultural critique of human ecology theory. Walter Firey (1945) subsequently offered a codification of this perspective, through his attention to the way that certain places in central Boston (e.g., historic parks such as the Commons, ancestral cemeteries, aristocratic quarters, and ethnic districts), withstood competitive real estate pressures in the central business district, through the strength of sentimental attachments and...

Postsocialism

The period after 1989 in Central and Eastern Europe has provided a unique natural experiment. Unlike the democratic transitions in Southern Europe and Latin America, Central and Eastern Europe have seen change in the economic as well as the political sphere. The precise nature and extent of this change is a matter of debate and certainly varies between countries -compare, for example, the images of capitalism without capitalists in Central Europe and capitalists without capitalism in Russia...

The Dream Factory Mass Culture Media Conglomerates and Labor Struggles

Walter Benjamin, in his seminal essay, The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction (1936) (Benjamin 1955 1968), critically reflected upon the emergence of the mass reproduction media (such as lithography, photography, and film), which had promoted the contemporary decay of what he perceived as the original aura of art and artistic experience. He stated This image makes it easy to comprehend the social bases of the contemporary decay of the aura. It rests on two circumstances, both of...

Conclusion The Subtleties of Language

The concluding paragraph, at the end of three volumes of dense discussion, illustrates exactly the ultimate failure of the analysis to be of help in reme dying the difficulties it documents. The language is worth examining in detail. It begins in what seems to be an activist mode there is nothing that cannot be changed by conscious, purposive social action, provided with information, and supported by legitimacy. Provided with information can be, but need not be, an ambiguous phrase grassroots...

Characteristics of the Multicentered Metropolitan Region

The new form of settlement space has not eliminated the classic central city but has only absorbed it in a matrix of increasingly personal, political, and business decisions that has assumed a regional shape. At the same time, every part of this deconcentrated mix has become more functionally specialized since the 1970s, so that, in particular, the historical central city has itself undergone profound change. Furthermore, it is precisely because of the action in space of population and business...

Public Education Incubator of the Discursive Shift to Islamism

Ironically, a key factor explaining the discursive shift to Islamism originated in the state's tolerance for the Muslim Brotherhood and its Islamization of educational policy. Sadat and later Mubarak shifted toward supporting Al-Azhar and the Ministry of Religious Endowments, thus Islamizing policies affecting women's rights, family law, education, and culture (Ramadan 1993 Auda 1994). Initially, in order to undermine the left and Nasserites, Sadat pursued a divide and rule policy by sponsoring...

Public Space Public Realm

With the cultural turn in urban theory there has been a move away from a focus on the distribution of public resources as materially defined to a more fluid and complex understanding of the public realm as defined by notions of the symbolic, the imaginary, performance, and theatricality. Though political economy approaches tended to ignore these realms, a long tradition of writing on the city and on public space from modernist to psychoanalytic writers had preceded the rather drier period of...

John Eade and Christopher Mele

2002 by Blackwell Publishers Ltd a Blackwell Publishing company except for editorial arrangement and introduction 2002 by John Eade and Christopher Mele Tel +44 (0)1865 791100 350 Main Street, Malden, MA 02148-5018, USA Tel +1 781 388 8250 The right of John Eade and Christopher Mele to be identified as the Authors of the editorial material has been asserted in accordance with the UK Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced,...

Las Vegas

Given its long association with various forms of vice, it is ironic that f ederal spending, and lots of it, triggered the rise of modern Las Vegas (Moehring 1989 13). In the early 1900s Las Vegas was a fledgling railroad and mining town and a nascent resort city, with a small but boisterous red-light district that formed on the two blocks of Fremont Street where the sale of liquor was allowed. In the 1930s and 1940s, federal spending on public works and defense projects pumped millions of...

Radical Rethinking The Evolution of Policies of Social Control in Cities

The instantaneous knowledge of violence and crime in the inner cities and less frequently in the rest of the city forces public authorities to react. Tensions affecting any point of the urban space in middle-size European countries spread like a shock wave across these societies. The effects of urban disorders are, however, more diffuse in federal countries where transmissions are as much horizontal from one land or state or county to the other as they are vertical. When trying to evaluate how...

Encrypted Spaces Multiple Bodies

The road to Rupena Agrahara, where Shivamma Thayee lived, is reached via the intermediate ring road. The road is very wide and busy and traveling on it, we pass places like a Hyundai car dealer, Datacons computer company, and a mosque. Once we take the turnoff to Rupena Agrahara, the road becomes bumpy, the straight lines break down, and the area rapidly takes on the character of a village swallowed by the metropolis. We finally reach an enclosed area in which trees and graves abound going by...

Michael Peter Smith

Two dominant themes have informed the construction of the local in the discourse on the global-local interplay in urban studies. The local has been frequently represented as the cultural space of embedded communities and, inversely, as an inexorable space of collective resistance to disruptive processes of globalization. In writings ranging from classical urban sociology to contemporary discourses on globalization and place, the locality has been used to signify an embedded community. Community...