Rural and Urban Trends
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Rural and Urban Trends Life and Work in the City: Urbanization, Citizenship, and Rights to the City. Guest Lecturer: Eli Elinoff, C. Phil . CIEE Khon Kaen Study Center Spring 2009. Outline. Why Cities? Small Group Activity Urbanization and Neoliberalism

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Outline

Rural and Urban TrendsLife and Work in the City:Urbanization, Citizenship, and Rights to the City.Guest Lecturer: Eli Elinoff, C. Phil. CIEE Khon Kaen Study CenterSpring 2009


Outline

Outline

  • Why Cities?

    • Small Group Activity

  • Urbanization and Neoliberalism

  • Case Studies in Participatory Development

    • Mumbai

    • Guatemala City

  • Rights and the City, Rights to the City


Session goals

Session Goals

  • (Re)introduce the city

  • Interrogate the relationship between urban and rural development issues

  • Examine urbanization and urban development in the 21st century

  • Begin considering the both the theoretical and actual questions posed by urbanization, development, and poverty.

  • Question the relationship between development and rights.


Sites of development development

Sites of development/Development

Shanghai 1890

Population ~1 Million


Shanghai today pop approximately 20 million including 3 million floating population

Shanghai TodayPop. Approximately 20 million including 3 Million “Floating” Population


S o paulo 1911

São Paulo 1911

Population Approximately 250,000


S o paulo today population 19 million

São Paulo TodayPopulation 19 Million


Spaces of concentrated wealth and power

Spaces of concentrated wealth and power…

Stock Exchange in Mumbai

Parliament

New Delhi


Alongside rampant poverty and social exclusion

…alongside rampant poverty and social exclusion

Citizens riot for equal rights,

Paris

Slum,

Mumbai


Loci of change

Loci of Change

  • Students overthrow the government

    Bangkok, 1973


Conflict

Conflict

3 years later the military returns and the student government is violently ousted

Bangkok 1976


And hybridity

…and Hybridity

Transgender

Woman

Nigeria

A DJ Rocks the Party

Tokyo, Japan

Chicano Park--San Diego


Urban explosion a few numbers

Urban Explosion:A Few Numbers

  • In 1950 there were only two cities with populations over 20 million; there are now twenty.

  • 180,000 people move to cities each day.

  • 2050 2/3 of the world’s population will live in cities.

  • Currently 1/3 of the world’s urban population lives slums.

  • By 2030 over 2 Billion people will live in slums

    • Source: UN Habitat


Outline

UN Millennium Goal: To achieve significant improvements in the lives of 100 Million slum dwellers by 2020.


A slum by any other name

A Slum by Any Other Name…

The UN defines a slum on a household level as any home that lacks access to Oneof the following Five elements:

  • Access to improved water

  • Access to improved sanitation

  • Security of tenure

  • Durability of housing

  • Sufficient living area


How do we read these numbers

How do we read these numbers?

  • Environmental and Social Catastrophe?

    • Planet of Slums-Mike Davis

  • Developmental Crisis?

    • Challenge of Slums - UN Habitat Report/ Millennium Goals

  • “The Coming Anarchy”?

    • Robert Kaplan

  • Political Opportunity?

    • Harvey


Mike davis planet of slums

Mike Davis: PlanetofSlums

  • Slums: “Settlements characterized by overcrowding, poor or informal housing, inadequate access to safe water, and insecurity of tenure.”

  • Wants to explore the costs of the rapid proliferation of urban slums during the neoliberal period.


Isi eoi urbanization and neoliberalism

ISI, EOI, Urbanization, and Neoliberalism

  • Import Substitution Industrialization and Export Oriented Industrialization

  • Underdevelopment isn’t just a phase, but historically created accumulation of $$ in the core

    • Produce Consumer Goods

    • Protection of Domestic Producers (In LA for domestic markets, in Asia for export)

    • State Built Infrastructure

    • Cheap loans from International lending Institutions (World Bank, IMF, ADB, Inter-American Development Bank, etc)


Problems with isi eoi

Problems with ISI/EOI

  • Greater Reliance on Core Countries through Debt.

  • Foreign Exchange Crisis

  • Military Dictatorships

  • PL480 and Deteriorated Capacity to Grow Cheap Grain

  • HUGE increase in poverty and cultural Disruptions

  • MIGRATION TO CITIES

  • Leads to Neoliberal reform packages


What is structural adjustment

What is structural adjustment?

  • A package of economic reforms based on liberal/neoliberal economic theories:

  • Drastic reduction of state involvement in national economy –

  • Elimination of state owned enterprises

  • Greater access to foreign capital

  • Reduced public spending, especially on social programs

  • Elimination of subsidies and protection for local industries

  • Wage restraints to keep labor competitive, increased levels of labor flexibility

  • Increased interest rates and taxes

  • Devaluation of currency

  • Immediate debt repayment with new foreign exchange


Neoliberalism and slums

Neoliberalism and Slums

  • Neoliberal Reforms Attempted to Undo “Urban Bias”

  • SAPs devastated rural landholders by eliminating subsidies-Life and Debt

  • “The main cause of of increase in poverty and inequality during the 1980s and 1990s was the retreat of the state.”--UN Slums Report from Davis 2004: 10


Results

Results

  • More Slums!

  • “Informal Sector” grows

  • Illegality becomes a common framework for everyday life (e.g. Lagos).

  • Decline in Real Wages

  • “Stagflation”--Particularly in Sub-Saharan Africa

  • Collapse of Construction, Sanitation, Public Transportation

  • Middle Class Decline

  • Increase in Crime/Gangs and “talk of crime”


Other effects

Other Effects

  • Prolitarianization of Women-the “Maquila Effect”

  • Migration: rural to urban and transnational

  • “Instead of being a focus for growth and prosperity, the cities have become a dumping ground for a surplus population working in unskilled, unprotected and low-wage informal services industries and trade.” UN Slums in (Davis 2004: 23)


The lived experience of the slum and the periphery

The lived experience of the slum and the periphery

  • Autoconstruction

  • Alternative Power Arrangements e.g. Patron/Client, New Social Movements

  • No urban services--water, sewage, paved roads, bus lines, electricity

  • Illegal ownership

    • Some people illegally takeover land--Squatting

    • Some buy deeds from land swindlers that may be forged or fraudulent

  • Extremely insecure.

    • Subject to violent evictions

    • No policing

    • Geographically insecure


Outline

Autoconstruction,

São Paulo

Periphery in Cochabamba,

Bolivia


Other peripheries

Other Peripheries?

Canals in Jakarta

Railroad Slums in Bangkok

Landfill in Tijuana ==>


Slum work

Slum Work

West Bank Scavengers- Israel/Palestine

Recycling Water Bottles-

Philippines

Techno Trash-India


What else

What else?

Laundry workers

Maquilas/Factory Work

Commercial Sex Industry


Outline

Relax

Celebrate

Play


And live

…and LIVE.

Dharavi, India


Appadurai s example mumbai slum squatters alliance

Appadurai’s example: Mumbai Slum/Squatters Alliance

  • An alliance of local groups that developed complex relationships with government bureaucrats with a combination of a politics of accommodation, pragmatism, and patience


Culture and development

Culture and Development

  • Why does Culture matter?

    • Cultures are not just heritage and tradition

    • Culture as systems of meaning

  • “In fact, cultures do not ignore the future. But they smuggle it in indirectly, when they speak of norms, beliefs, and values.”

  • Taylor’s “Politics of Recognition”

  • Sen’s “Development as Freedom, Dignity, and moral well being”


The capacity to aspire

“The Capacity to Aspire”

  • A cultural capacity that allows people to envision a future and articulate it in a way that alter the “terms of recognition.”

    • Culturally Formed/Social

    • Aspirations-socially generated visions of “the good life.”

    • Enacted through specific arenas-metaphors, performances, and narratives.

    • Capacity is not evenly distributed in society


The micro practices of empowerment

The micro-practices of empowerment

  • They have particular beliefs and strategies:

    1. mobilizing the knowledge of the poor into methods driven by the poor and for the poor is a long term process,

    • slow and risk laden, so bias against “projectization” and development-driven timelines

      2. Savings as a spiritual virtue and form of discipline leading to political fortitude, commitment to collective good, and self-sufficiency

    • Micro-credit as a tool


3 precedent setting

3. precedent setting:

  • claiming certain ways of doing things in spaces the poor control, and then “show and tell”

    • This provides a linguistic device – a way of talking about things – that turns survival strategies into legitimate foundations for policy innovations by the state

    • And gets people on their side by getting them to use their language

    • Allows the poor to demonstrate that their preexisting strategies are viable foundations that do not necessarily need to be changed, but built upon


4 organizational strategies to accompany the discursive ones

4. organizational strategies to accompany the discursive ones:

  • Housing exhibitions

    • Where structural bias of existing knowledge is challenged through presentation of poor people’s creativity in building housing out of flimsy material

    • Fostering people’s visions of the future, of space, of good life

      • REMEMBER: Many of these people have constructed their homes themselves.

  • Toilet festivals: “The politics of shit”

    • Turning the humiliation into the carnavalesque and technical innovation

    • From abject to subjects/protagonists

    • Impressive, right?


Outline

Sustainable Peripheries in Guatemala City By Edward Murphy, University of Michigan Department of Anthropology (2005)

  • Examines a peripheral neighborhood he calls El Mezquital.

  • Originally founded through land invasion in 1986 by residents forced to move out of inner-Guatemala City

    • “Land Invasion” affects the moral landscape squatters inhabit


Rights to the city

Rights to the City?

  • In order for squatters to gain access to urban services many communities organize.

  • Demand recognition and redistribution.

    • Housing and Urban Services as Rights

  • Murphy shows that El Meziquital was highly organized and extremely effective.

    • Gaining international attention

    • UNICEF and Doctors Without Borders

    • The Arrival of the “Anti-Politics Machine”


The results

The Results

  • Housing is legalized and the community gets services!!!

    • This should not be qualified or understated--This is a success.

  • Insertion into the Development Apparatus

    • Depoliticization as technical questions emerge: lot sizes, occupancy history, “proper resident behavior,” leadership is chosen by authorities, squatters are framed by the media as “irresponsible,” “unable to care for themselves,” and “in need of help”

  • Many residents are forced to move to other, even more insecure parts of the periphery.


Sustainable peripheries

Sustainable Peripheries

  • Murphy ultimately argues that these political sites are turned into “sustainable peripheries”--”Borderland spaces that, having fulfilled the ‘minimum’ requirements of urban modernity, remain in subordinate social, economic, and political positions. The act of squatting thus becomes regulated and incorporated into the dynamics of “Guatemala’s” constricted transnational democracy, legitimizing inequality.”


Rights and the city

Rights and the City

  • Harvey argues that urbanization is the result of a “surplus product.”

  • The “push/pull” of the surplus draws resources and people towards the urban center at a “compound rate.”

  • Cities are central to the survival of capitalism

  • Urbanization becomes a central “site of political/class struggle”


Rights to the city1

Rights to the City

  • From Marxist Geographer Henri Lefebver (1968):

    “Rights to the city should modify, concretize, and make more practical the rights of the citizen as an urban dweller and user of multiple services. It would affirm, on the one hand, the right of users to make known their ideas on the space and time of their activities in the urban area; it would also cover the right to use the center, a privileged place, instead of being dispersed and stuck into ghettos (for workers immigrants, the marginal and even the ‘privileged).”


Rights to the city at home

Rights to the City at Home

Should people be ticketed for

Sleeping outside?


Mcgonigal canyon

McGonigal Canyon

  • The San Diego’s largest migrant camp located in Carmel Valley faced eviction last year.

Check out:http://www.voiceofsandiego.org/voice_special_reports/the_forbidden_city/


Recent headlines

Recent Headlines

  • 4 Charred Bodies in Calif. Migrant Camp--October 26th 2007 AP Service

  • “11 of 18 in burn unit undocumented”

    • October 31st 2007 San Diego Union Tribune


Final questions for discussion rumination

Final Questions for Discussion/Rumination

  • What are the social conditions that produced the peculiar spatial arrangements in Khon Kaen?

  • What rights do people have to the city in Khon Kaen? Which rights are denied? To whom?

  • In what ways does the transformation of Isaan as a whole demonstrate the interconnections between rural and urban processes?

  • How do current efforts to remake Khon Kaen’s poor neighborhoods perpetuate or upset the social inequality at the root of their very existence?


Bonus challenge

BONUS CHALLENGE!

  • Does the ESCR Covenant provide a language to begin articulating Human Rights claims through the use of the “rights to the city” concept?

  • Are there connections between these two versions of rights that might help to make ESCR claims more potent vehicles for social change?


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