The notion of the Just City emerges from philosophical discussions about what justice is combined with the intellectual history of utopias and ideal cities. The contributors to this volume, including Susan Fainstein, David Harvey and Margit Mayer articulate a conception of the Just City and then examine it from differing angles, ranging from Marxist thought to communicative theory. The arguments both develop the concept of a Just City and question it, as well as suggesting alternatives for future expansion. Explorations of the concept in practice include case studies primarily from U.S. cities, but also from Europe, the Middle East and Latin America.
The authors find that a forthright call for justice in all aspects of city life, putting the question of what a Just City should be on the agenda of urban reform, can be a practical approach to solving questions of urban policy. This synthesis is provocative in a globalised world and the contributing authors bridge the gap between theoretical conceptualizations of urban justice and the reality of planning and building cities. The notion of the Just City is an empowering framework for contemporary urban actors to improve the quality of urban life and Searching for the Just City is a seminal read for practitioners, professionals, students, researchers and anyone interested in what urban futures should aim to achieve.
Peter Marcuse, a lawyer and urban planner, is Professor Emeritus of Urban Planning at Columbia University in New York City. He is currently involved in, and has written on, the impact of September 11 on New York City, of Katrina on New Orleans, and on globalization, focusing on its impact on social justice.
James Connolly is a doctoral student in Urban Planning at Columbia University. His research focuses on the role of community organizations within complex organizational fields of urban policy-making.
Johannes Novy is currently finishing his PhD in Urban Planning at Columbia University's Graduate School for Architecture, Planning and Preservation. Novy's research interests include planning history and theory, urban tourism, as well as urban development in North America and Europe.
Ingrid Olivo is a PhD student in Urban Planning at Columbia University. Her research focuses on the role of cultural heritage in post-disaster development planning.
Cuz Potter is a doctoral student in the Urban Planning Department at Columbia University.
Justin Steil is a joint PhD/JD student in Urban Planning and in Law at Columbia University. His research focuses on the exercise of power through control over space, especially through the relation between housing, land use and immigration.
The contributors provide cutting-edge analyses of contemporary urban restructuring, including the issues of neoliberalization, gentrification, colonization, "creative" cities, architecture and political power, sub-prime mortgage foreclosures and the ongoing struggles of "right to the city" movements. At the same time, the book explores the diverse interpretive frameworks – critical and otherwise – that are currently being used in academic discourse, in political struggles, and in everyday life to decipher contemporary urban transformations and contestations. The slogan, "cities for people, not for profit," sets into stark relief what the contributors view as a central political question involved in efforts, at once theoretical and practical, to address the global urban crises of our time.
Drawing upon European and North American scholarship in sociology, politics, geography, urban planning and urban design, the book provides useful insights and perspectives for citizens, activists and intellectuals interested in exploring alternatives to contemporary forms of capitalist urbanization.
Fainstein applies theoretical concepts about justice developed by contemporary philosophers to the concrete problems faced by urban planners and policymakers and argues that, despite structural obstacles, meaningful reform can be achieved at the local level. In the first half of The Just City, Fainstein draws on the work of John Rawls, Martha Nussbaum, Iris Marion Young, Nancy Fraser, and others to develop an approach to justice relevant to twenty-first-century cities, one that incorporates three central concepts: diversity, democracy, and equity. In the book's second half, Fainstein tests her ideas through case studies of New York, London, and Amsterdam by evaluating their postwar programs for housing and development in relation to the three norms. She concludes by identifying a set of specific criteria for urban planners and policymakers to consider when developing programs to assure greater justice in both the process of their formulation and their effects.
The James Connolly Reader contains his most important articles, pamphlets and books. An extensive introduction contextualises Connolly for anyone interested in Irish history, struggles for self-determination and the global socialist movement. Connolly was a leading participant at the epicenter of events shaping the course of modern Ireland. Those events and Connolly's practical and theoretical contribution are critically relevant. He insisted and action on the belief the world could and must be turned upside down in pursuit of human liberation. Another Ireland, another world was possible and Connolly was determined to see it born.
Associate Editors: Jan Schmittauer, Matthew M Cariello, &
Donna Spector Managing Editor: Barbara Bergmann
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