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Splintering Cities examines the logics and motivations behind elite urban withdrawal, dispossession and urban regeneration projects occurring in the Southern city. The section aims to explore the perceived splintering of the urban ‘public’ – into fractured spaces of the slum, gated community, highway, airport etc. The section further examines the manner in which both overt mobilisations of “security”/ “risk”, and everyday urban conflicts between competing identities/groups enforce a defacto splintering between and within an urban elite and subaltern.

Anatomy of a demolition

One year ago last month, part of a Delhi slum was demolished; the demolition received almost no public attention. As politicians across India are speaking to the urban poor, asking for their votes and promising them secure housing, it is important to recall these events and the official attitude they represent.

The urban paradox

As Cities in Conflict goes on hiatus, I take a look back at the past fourteen months of publishing articles, film, photo-essays, mappings and infographics on the series, and comment on where urbanism is today: stuck between logics of saviourism and withdrawal.

Sexual violence on the margins of Delhi

While debates on sexual violence in India focus on the city, the experiences of women expunged to the city's fraught, anonymous margins are all too often excluded. Content warning: this article contains description of rape and sexual violence.

Whose smart city?

The proliferation of 'smart' solutions to a deluge of political and economic problems in today's cities may well serve to reinforce urban inequality at a time when new radical alternatives are in desperate need.

Focus E15: the young mothers' struggle for universal housing

For more than six months, a small group of young, homeless mothers have been battling for decent and secure social housing for everyone. The mothers highlight an emerging problem facing thousands across the country: it's getting very hard to find a place to live. Today the women will hand in their petition to City Hall.

Gentrification: how do we define it and who cares anyway?

Rather than fighting over what gentrification is and what it's not, attention needs to paid to the actual experiences of urban change affecting communities across the world.

Charter cities in Honduras?

Are private cities the miracle cure for Honduras' surging violent crime, state violence and institutional disarray?

Istanbul in transformation

The Gezi park protests of June 2013 drew the attention of the world to a very urban conflict in Turkey's most populous city. Less covered, were the various micro-conflicts behind the scenes which led to eruption at Gezi.

Resisting the city

In the face of rapid urban expansion and environmental degradation, the people of Usme, a periurban town of Bogotá, have mobilised to protect the local environment and strengthen community autonomy over the neighbourhood.

City bypassed: the casualties of Mumbai's urban renewal

Watch: A short film exploring Mumbai's urban renewal as seen from Byculla, a multicultural inner-city neighbourhood symbolically and physically bypassed by road infastructure projects in Mumbai's race for global city status (13 mins).

Mount Zion: the city within

Rather than submit to the noxious dynamics of Spain’s colossal underground economy, the migrant workers of Mount Zion built an informal city in the backdrop of 'brand' Barcelona. On the 24th July the community was forcibly evicted and a humanitarian crisis was born.

São Paulo: the city and its protest

While the recent protests in São Paulo are made up of a cross-section of Paulite society 'waking up' to social injustice, it is young people from the urban periphery, those which have 'never slept' who dominate the demonstrations, demanding access, freedom and a new kind of urban living.

Breakfast in Detroit

Visions of Detroit as a "ruined city" have become popular. But volunteers are stepping into the breach to rebuild their communities: even through such simple measures as a hot breakfast. 

Reclaiming life in the precarious city

Despite the recent crackdown on squatting in the UK and Europe, across the Global North we are now witnessing the slow emergence of an alternative politics of housing that seeks to challenge the pieties of neoliberal restructuring, and re-think ways of inhabiting cities.

Planning for exclusion in Abuja

Rigid planning and development controls in Abuja, Nigeria's modern capital, have served to exclude population groups deemed 'unworldy' from the city-proper.

The myth of resettlement in Delhi

Since 2000, activist groups across India have sought to defend slum communities from dispossession in favour of 'participatory' resettlement on the urban periphery. The popularity of such reasoning has lead to the myth that squatters prefer resettlement to illegality, denying squatters a right to remain and masking the real, everyday exclusions in the lives of the resettled.

Failed cities?

Everyday life in some western cities is often more dangerous than living in so-called 'failed states'. Is it thus time to re-scale security analysis?

Spectacle and surveillance in Brazil

The unprecedented series of mega-events which are set to take place across Brazil in the coming years have lead to heightened security in host cities – a gold mine for the global private defence industry.

Architecture must be defended: informality and the agency of space

To engage in areas where it is needed most, architecture must begin a new critical project to reclaim the inherently political nature of the practice.

The battle for Golibar: urban splintering in Mumbai

The ‘Mumbai model’ of public-private partnerships in urban land and housing development is being adopted and piloted across India, and the world. So why has the ‘Mumbai model’ in Golibar provoked such outrage?

Squeezing the poor out of London

From April 2013 major changes to benefit provision in Britain will likely change both the social and spatial make-up of our cities. The squeezing out of poorer residents from London and elsewhere, raises an important question: exactly who has the ‘right’ to the city in contemporary Britain?

São Paulo: insecure citizens, all of them

Recent spikes in homicides across São Paulo challenge the city's reputation as a darling of public security and underscores the pervasive control criminal gangs like the Primeiro Comando da Capital have on the everyday security of city-residents.

Conservation and dispossession in Bogotá

The deployment of conservation zones in Bogotá's 'green' neighbourhoods, is fast becoming an alibi for the dispossession of the city's most vulnerable residents.

Peopling space: contemporary redevelopment in Bogotá

While previous 'security planning'  in Bogotá has been premised on eviction and demolition, emerging redevelopment frameworks are geared toward a far more pervasive practice of urban renovation; the re-peopling of problem areas in the city.

Medellín: who's afraid of hip-hop?

Ten young hip-hop activists have been murdered in Medellín's Comuna 13 district since 2009. Such violence against young hip-hoppers demonstrates the lingering contradictions of urban security still present in Colombia's 'miracle' city.

The politics of neglect in post-Mubarak Cairo

The politics of neglect which has long governed Cairo's expansive informal spaces looks set to remain well into the post-Mubarak era.

Securing Bogotá

Bogotá's lauded transition from chaotic city of crime and violence to cosmopolitan hub of commerce and creativity belies the manner in which 'security' has been differentially mobilized over the past fifteen years, to stigmatise and displace the city's most vulnerable residents.

Rio's favela residents fight mega-event eviction

Gleaming plans for urban revitalization ahead of the 2014 World Cup and 2016 Olympics include the not-so-shiny removal of thousands of families in lower-class communities.

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