Urban and Urbanization

Urban everyday politics: Politicising practices and the transformation of the here and now

This article responds to both ongoing urban practices and strands of urban theory by arguing for a (re-)turn to the everyday as a means of thinking about antagonism and political possibility. We examine how the everyday might be conceived politically and wonder what it is about the current conjuncture that is fuelling the reimagining of the political possibility of the urban. We develop the category of urban everyday politics to capture the politicised everyday practices observable in our towns and cities: collective, organised and strategic practices that articulate a political antagonism embedded in, but breaking with, urban everyday life through altering socio-spatial relations. While we make no empirical claims about the current impact of this form of politics, we assert the political potential of viewing the everyday as a source, stake and site of dissensus in current urban conditions. Politicising the urban everyday offers, we conclude, a strategy for transformative politics, one in which the state recedes from view, micropolitical action is transcended and democratic possibilities lie in the transformation of the urban here and now.

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Volume 37 Issue 1

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