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Neighborhood as RefugeCommunity Reconstruction, Place Remaking, and Environmental Justice in the City$
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Isabelle Anguelovski

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780262026925

Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: September 2014

DOI: 10.7551/mitpress/9780262026925.001.0001

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Advancing Broader Political Agendas

Advancing Broader Political Agendas

Spatial Justice, Land and Border Control, and Deepening Democracy

(p.165) 6 Advancing Broader Political Agendas
Neighborhood as Refuge

Isabelle Anguelovski

The MIT Press

Chapter 6 analyzes the broader political goals that activists and their supporters advance when they organize for environmental revitalization. They challenge public officials and planners who prioritize developments in the neighborhood and decide the neighborhood's significance in Barcelona, Havana, and Boston. They also fight existing racist and classist stigmas and stereotypes about low-income and minority residents. Much of their broader political work has focused on giving residents a greater sense of dignity, addressing vulnerable individual and family situations, and resisting broader processes of encroachment, excessive tourism development, and environmental gentrification. Activists emphasize that unless they acknowledge development, growth, and gentrification, fighting for community reconstruction and place remaking will be fruitless, and environmental justice achievements will be jeopardized. Consequently, they have aimed at controlling projects and activities taking place within the neighborhood territory, gaining secure tenure over the land, and building residents’ stewardship of it. They have set up and maintained physical and symbolic borders with outsiders whom they see as threats to the stability and cohesion of their neighborhood. Last, as activists fight against outside threats and influences, they create self-managed spaces and new models for democratic planning and participation in the city and recapturing the roots of democracy.

Keywords:   Right to the City, Right to the Neighborhood, Environmental gentrification, Transgressive planning, Roots of democracy

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