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The SAGE Handbook of the 21st Century City

The SAGE Handbook of the 21st Century City

First Edition
Edited by:

October 2017 | 730 pages | SAGE Publications Ltd
The SAGE Handbook of the 21st Century City focuses on the dynamics and disruptions of the contemporary city in relation to capricious processes of global urbanization, mutation and resistance.  An international range of scholars engage with emerging urban conditions and inequalities in experimental ways, speaking to new ideas of what constitutes the urban, highlighting empirical explorations and expanding on contributions to policy and design. The handbook is organised around nine key themes, through which familiar analytic categories of race, gender and class, as well as binaries such as the urban/rural, are readdressed. These thematic sections together capture the volatile processes and intricacies of urbanization that reveal the turbulent nature of our early twenty-first century:
  • Hierarchy: Elites and Evictions
  • Productivity: Over-investment and Abandonment
  • Authority: Governance and Mobilisations
  • Volatility: Disruption and Adaptation
  • Conflict: Vulnerability and Insurgency
  • Provisionality: Infrastructure and Incrementalism
  • Mobility: Re-bordering and De-bordering
  • Civility: Contestation and Encounter
  • Design: Speculation and Imagination
This is a provocative, inter-disciplinary handbook for all academics and researchers interested in contemporary urban studies.
Suzanne Hall, Ricky Burdett
1) Introduction: The Urban Churn
Part 1: Questions of Definition: An Urban Compendium
Jenny Robinson, Sue Parnell
2) The Global Urban: Difference and Complexity in Urban Studies and the Science of Cities
Ananya Roy
3) Urban Studies and the Postcolonial Encounter
Neil Brenner, Christian Schmid
4) Elements for a New Epistemology of the Urban
Part 2: Hierarchy: Elites and Evictions
Mike Savage
5) The Elite Habitus in Cities of Accumulation
Caroline Knowles, Roger Burrows
6) Reimagining Chinese London
Matt Desmond
7) Eviction and the Reproduction of Urban Poverty
Part 3: Productivity: Over-investment and Abandonment
Saskia Sassen
8) Global Cities: Places for Researching the Translocal
Alex Schafran
9) Origins of an Urban Crisis: The Restructuring of the San Francisco Bay Area and the Geography of Foreclosure
Fran Tonkiss
10) Urban Economy and Social Inequality in Productivity: Investment and Abandonment
Alice Mah
11) Ruination and Post-industrial Urban Decline
Part 4: Authority: Governance and Mobilisations
Patrick Le Galès
12) The Political Sociology of Cities and Urbanisation Processes: Social Movements, Inequalities and Governance
Patrick Bond
13) Limits to South Africa’s ‘Right to the City’: Prospects For and Beyond Urban Commoning
Asher Ghertner
14) Aesthetic Governmentality : Administering the ‘World-Class’ City in Delhi’s Slums
Part 5: Volatility: Disruption and Adaptation
Kevin Fox Gotham, Wesley Cheek
15) Post-Disaster, Recovery and Rebuilding
Amita Baviskar
16) What the Eye Does Not See: The Yamuna in the Imagination of Delhi
Austin Zeiderman
17) Endangered City: Security and Citizenship in Bogota
Part 6: Conflict: Vulnerability and Insurgency
Christine Hentschel
18) The European Refugee Crisis in “Our” Cities: Conflict, Vulnerability and Ethics of Surface
Anna M. Agathangelou
19) Temporal (Un)Civility of the City: MENA Urban Insurgencies and Revolutions
Wendy Pullan
20) Violent Infrastructures, Places of Conflict: Urban Order in Divided Cities
Part 7: Provisionality: Infrastructure and Incrementalism
AbdouMaliq Simone
21) The Majority-World and the Politics of Everyday Living in Southeast Asia
Colin McFarlane
22) Incremental Urbanism and Tactical Learning: Reflections from Mumbai and Kampala
Edgar Pieterse, Katherine Hyman
23) Infrastructure Deficits and Potential in African Cities
Part 8: Mobility: Re-bordering and De-bordering
Ash Amin
24) City of Migrants
Suzanne Hall, Robin Finlay, Julia King
25) The Migrant Street
Xiangming Chen, Curtis Stone
26) Rethinking Border Cities: In-Between Spaces, Unequal Actors and Stretched Mobility Across the China-Southeast Asia Borderland
Victoria Redclift
27) Re-bordering Camp and City: ‘Race’, Space and Citizenship in Dhaka
Alex Rhys Taylor
28) The Essences of Multiculture: A Sensory Exploration of an Inner-city Street Market
Part 9: Civility: Contestation and Encounter
David Madden
29) The Contradictions of Urban Public Space: The View From London and New York
Talja Blokland
30) The Public Life of Social Capital
Sarah Nuttall
31) From the Speculative to the Littoral City
Part 10: Design: Speculation and Imagination
Richard Sennett
32) The Public Realm
Rahul Mehrotra
33) Urban Design: Beyond Architecture at Scale
Lindsay Bremner
34) Towards a Minor Global Architecture at Lamu, Kenya
Eyal Weizman
35) Forensic Architecture: Political Practice, Activism, Aesthetics
Keller Easterling
36) Designing Infrastructure
William Mann
37) A Latecomer Imagines the City

Look no further.  Whether interested in the latest conceptual turn in defining the urban, or in the importance of transcending disciplinary boundaries in the study of cities, this handbook has it all. It is a superb collection that contains a remarkable set of essays from the world’s leading urbanists whose combined wisdom is essential to anyone seeking to understand the 21st century city.  As noted in the editors’ introduction, this is not your standard urban sociology monograph. It is a call to consider new methods of action and imagination, built on a scholarly embrace of ethnographic and analytical thinking and brought to life through the careful reexamination of what the city is and might become in times of rapid and disruptive change. Adroitly organized around a range of thematic topics and scales of inquiry that shed light on timely issues such as immigration, risk, eviction, and conflict as well as more enduring concerns like governance, globalization, and investment, the main challenge for the reader will be to absorb it all. Yet, the editors’ abiding concern with the socio-spatial and experiential contours of the urban, and their clear appreciation for the impact of design on the production and consumption of the city, provide an opportunity to tie together the various sections and chapters in unique and provocative ways.  Although there are many worthy urban collections available on the market today, hands-down this is the one I’d want my students to read and my colleagues to discuss.

Diane E. Davis
Charles Dyer Norton Professor of Regional Planning and Urbanism, Harvard Graduate School of Design

This outstanding collection of essays, reflections, provocations and "excavations of the future" is both timely and appropriate. Appropriate, since it asks the reader to re-assess the way in which contemporary urbanity is both familiar and not, depending on one's location and perspective, and timely since the editors' bold assertion of a new taxonomy of issues from 'authority' to 'civility' dissolves the decades-old hierarchies between First- and Third World, developed and developing, the West and the Rest. Individual essays aside, its most important contribution to the exploding field(s) of scholarship concerned with how we understand, shape, influence and inhabit our increasingly urban world is to draw threads across 'profoundly asymmetrical' lines of power, race, class and culture that acknowledge difference without flattening it, or without aspiring to 'models for the whole world', yet, at the same time, asserts the oft-buried capacity in all of us to connect, share, dialogue and learn from each other. 'Design' here is less concerned with a conventional reading of form/performance and aesthetics and more preoccupied with our ability to imagine new ways of reading and engaging the world around us. In their own words, a 'churningly' fine collection that manages to be poetic, provocative and pedagogically compelling all at once.

Lesley Lokko
Head of the Graduate School of Architecture, University of Johannesburg, South Africa

Astute and comprehensive, this expertly assembled volume moves through and well beyond the categories that have shaped our current understandings of cities – global and ordinary, northern and southern, formal and informal, civil and conflictual – to reveal the struggles over meaning and access that cut across class, culture, politics, and space. Read together, the pieces vividly capture the brutalities and possibilities of capitalist urban development, honing in on the mobilities and mobilizations – characterized here as the “urban churn” – that give cities their dynamic character.

Liza Weinstein
Associate Professor in Sociology, Northeastern University, USA

In the respected tradition of the SAGE Handbook, this collection brings together the most important urban scholars of out time. Their insightful analyses of the processes, experiences and consequences of urbanization draw upon a diverse array of cities and remind us that the effects of urbanization reach beyond any geographical city limit.  This carefully curated collection redefines the interdisciplinary field of urban studies and sets its moral course to meet the challenges of the 21st century. 

Professor of Urban Studies, Yale-NUS College, Singapore

"Written for practitioners and upper-level undergraduates, this title is recommended for public libraries located in cities and urban centers and for academic libraries supporting urban studies in sociology."

Ladyjane Hickey

Suzanne Hall

Ricky Burdett

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ISBN: 9781473907560

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