Juxtacity: An approach to urban difference, division, authority and citizenship

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Difference is foundational to urban governance and urban life. This article—and the special issue—focuses analytically on the juxtaposition of multiple urban differences, and what happens especially in relation to urban authority and citizenship when such differences articulate with each other. This analytical work is based on a conceptual lens we call juxtacity, which is used to examine the origins, dynamics, and effects of urban divides, where urban divides are seen as active, situated domains in themselves that provide key opportunities for understanding and theorizing complex urban dynamics. The juxtacity approach emphasizes three key elements of difference and division—relationality, articulation, and productive co-constitution—and their differentiated effects. The focus is especially on but not limited to more overt, visible structures of urban domination, but consciously counters the ways in which more common sense hierarchies of power leave out a wide range of subtler forms of inequality, domination, exclusion, and violence. These latter are crucial for understanding differences and divisions in cities around the world. The juxtacity approach counters EuroAmerican-as-universal urban theory. Including cases from Africa and Asia, the special issue employs a form of openly comparative southern urbanism that contributes to the wider project of theorizing from the south/southeast.
Original languageEnglish
JournalUrban Forum
Issue number3
Pages (from-to)273-288
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2020

    Research areas

  • Faculty of Theology - Juxtacity, Urban divides, urban authority, urban citizenship

ID: 254509763