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The Right to the City : Social Justice and the Fight for Public Space - Don Mitchell

The Right to the City

Social Justice and the Fight for Public Space

Paperback Published: 24th February 2003
ISBN: 9781572308473
Number Of Pages: 270

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In the wake of terrorist attacks in 2001, efforts to secure the American city have life-or-death implications. Yet demands for heightened surveillance and security throw into sharp relief timeless questions about the nature of public space, how it is to be used and under what conditions. Blending historical and geographical analysis, this book examines the vital relationship between struggles over public space and movements for social justice in the United States. Presented are a series of linked cases that explore the judicial response to public demonstrations by early 20th-century workers, and comparable legal issues surrounding anti-abortion protests today; the Free Speech Movement and the history of People's Park in Berkeley; and the plight of homeless people facing new laws against their presence in urban streets. The central focus is on how political dissent gains meaning and momentum and is regulated and policed in the real, physical spaces of the city.

Industry Reviews

"In this wide-ranging tour de force, Don Mitchell offers us a rich and geographically grounded exploration of struggles over urban public space. This is scholarship in the best sense of the word: politically engaged, theoretically informed, and powerfully argued. Urban public space emerges not only as a site of brutal and often violent control, but also as a space of liberation and hope. Mitchell shows us that public spaces--the streets and parks of the everyday--matter, and are worth fighting for."--Nicholas K. Blomley, Department of Geography, Simon Fraser University, Burnaby, BC, Canada

"Don Mitchell packs a wallop like the pamphleteering Marx. Polemical, stirring, and angry, this book is required reading for anyone who cares about the fate of our cities and our fragile democracy."--Andy Merrifield, Graduate School of Geography, Clark University

"This provocative work asserts that the right to public space is crucial to advancing the cause of justice. Complex yet comprehensible, the book balances the ideas of legal scholars, cultural theorists, and social scientists with Mitchell's singular voice based on his extensive thinking and research in the area. Mitchell thoughtfully argues that the struggle for rights actually produces public space and thus insists that rights be taken seriously, especially by leftist scholars, as they are central to counteracting exclusionary practices and the pervasive power of the state. This book is especially appropriate for advanced undergraduate and graduate courses on the city."--Sallie A. Marston, Department of Geography and Regional Development, University of Arizona

Introduction: The Fight for Public Space: What Has Changed?p. 1
To Go Again to Hyde Park: Public Space, Rights, and Social Justicep. 13
Public Space and the Right to the Cityp. 17
Making Dissent Safe for Democracy: Violence, Order, and the Legal Geography of Public Spacep. 42
Bubble Laws, Abortion Rights, and the Legal Content of Public Spacep. 43
Regulating Public Spacep. 47
Violence, Order, and the Contradictions of Public Spacep. 51
Disorder, Violence, and the Legal Construction of Public Space before World War Ip. 54
Making Dissent Safe for Democracyp. 58
Regulating Public Forumsp. 71
Conclusionp. 74
From Free Speech to People's Park: Locational Conflict and the Right to the Cityp. 81
Nonconformists, Anarchists, and Communists: Free Speech in Berkeleyp. 83
From Free Speech to Counterculture: Urban Renewal and the Battle for People's Parkp. 105
The End of Public Space?: People's Park, the Public, and the Right to the Cityp. 118
Struggling over Public Space: The Volleyball Riotsp. 118
The Dialectic of Public Spacep. 128
The Importance of Public Space in Democratic Societiesp. 130
The Position of the Homeless in Public Space and as Part of the Publicp. 134
Public Space in the Contemporary Cityp. 137
The End of Public Space?p. 142
The Necessity of Material Public Spacesp. 147
Conclusion: The End of People's Park as a Public Space?p. 151
Codap. 152
The Annihilation of Space by Law: Anti-Homeless Laws and the Shrinking Landscape of Rightsp. 161
The Annihilating Economyp. 163
The Annihilation of People by Lawp. 167
The Problem of Regulationp. 173
Citizenship in the Spaces of the City: A Brutal Public Spherep. 181
Landscape or Public Space?p. 184
Conclusionp. 190
No Right to the City: Anti-Homeless Campaigns, Public Space Zoning, and the Problem of Necessityp. 195
"Broken Windows"p. 199
Santa Ana's Anti-Camping Ordinance and the Problem of Necessityp. 204
Anti-Homeless Campaigns and the Content of Contemporary Urban Justicep. 209
Public Space Zoningp. 211
Conclusionp. 219
Conclusion: The Illusion and Necessity of Order: Toward a Just Cityp. 227
Spaces of Justicep. 230
Referencesp. 239
Indexp. 263
About the Authorp. 270
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9781572308473
ISBN-10: 1572308478
Audience: Professional
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 270
Published: 24th February 2003
Publisher: Guilford Publications
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 22.9 x 15.2  x 1.91
Weight (kg): 0.41