Divided Spaces Ethereal Bodies

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...

Bibliography

Alexander, C. 1996 The Art of Being Black. Oxford Clarendon Press. Anthias, F. 1998 Evaluating diaspora beyond ethnicity Sociology 32 (3) 557-80. Appadurai, A. 1990 Disjuncture and difference in the global cultural economy. In M. Featherstone (ed.), Global Culture Nationalism, Globalization and Modernity. London Sage. Ballard, R. (ed.) 1994 Desh Pardesh The South Asian Presence in Britain. London Hurst. Bhabha, H. (ed.) 1990 Nation and Narration. New York Routledge. Brah, A. 1996 Cartographies...

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...