Locked In, Locked Out
Gated Communities in a Puerto Rican City
Publication Year: 2013
In November 1993, the largest public housing project in the Puerto Rican city of Ponce—the second largest public housing authority in the U.S. federal system—became a gated community. Once the exclusive privilege of the city's affluent residents, gates now not only locked "undesirables" out but also shut them in. Ubiquitous and inescapable, gates continue to dominate present-day Ponce, delineating space within government and commercial buildings, schools, prisons, housing developments, parks, and churches. In Locked In, Locked Out, Zaire Zenit Dinzey-Flores shows how such gates operate as physical and symbolic ways to distribute power, reroute movement, sustain social inequalities, and cement boundary lines of class and race across the city.
In its exploration of four communities in Ponce—two private subdivisions and two public housing projects—Locked In, Locked Out offers one of the first ethnographic accounts of gated communities devised by and for the poor. Dinzey-Flores traces the proliferation of gates on the island from Spanish colonial fortresses to the New Deal reform movement of the 1940s and 1950s, demonstrating how urban planning practices have historically contributed to the current trend of community divisions, shrinking public city spaces, and privatizing gardens. Through interviews and participant observation, she argues that gates have transformed the twenty-first-century city by fostering isolation and promoting segregation, ultimately shaping the life chances of people from all economic backgrounds. Relevant and engaging, Locked In, Locked Out reveals how built environments can create a cartography of disadvantage—affecting those on both sides of the wall.
Published by: University of Pennsylvania Press
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...composure, I think it would be good if certain things were said.when I set out to do research in the gated communities of the poor and rich in Ponce, fear was paramount. I grew up in Puerto Rico in the 1970s and 1980s, when carjackings were frequent and yearly murder counts headlined the news. Spaces of the poor, and caseríos (public housing) especially, were ...
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It is as if, then, the beauty— the beauty of the sea, the land, the air, the trees, the market, the people, the sounds they make— were a prison, and as if everything and everybody inside it were locked out.Roy Lichtenstein’s painting Interior with African Mask (1991) caught my at-tention from the first time I saw it, as a college freshman at Harvard’s Fogg ...
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With every foundation of the city one should expect definitions and On November 8, 1993, Dr. Manuel de la Pila, the largest public housing proj-ect in the city of Ponce in Puerto Rico (the second- largest public housing authority in the U.S. federal system), became a gated community. Up until then, gates had kept people out rather than keeping people in. Gates had be-...
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Yo tengo ya la casita, que tanto te prometí. Tan llena de margaritas para ti, para mí. Será un refugio de amores. Será una cosa ideal. Y entre romances y flores formaremos nuestro hogar. (I finally have the house I had promised. Full of margaritas for you, for me. It will be a refuge of love. It will be an ideal thing. And between romance ...
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He has an important job: Protect the yard. Sometimes people come in and out. . . . Most of the time, they are good people and he doesn’t bother them. He doesn’t know why they are good people. He just knows it. Sometimes they are bad people, and he has to do Ramiro explained to me on the phone how I was to get inside his house in ...
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No quiero vivir en una ciudad con tanques de guerra. Yo vivo en una democracia y la democracia se respeta. (I don’t want to live in a city full When I interviewed Nelly at the upper- middle- class gated community of Ex-tensión Alhambra, I knew I could not waste time. Nelly was very busy with civic endeavors. Her IKEA- like modern multipurpose den–family room–of-...
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I’ve stolen a garden. . . . It isn’t mine. It isn’t anybody’s.Rexford Tugwell, the last American governor appointed for the island of Puerto Rico, a fervent New Dealer, wrote of the upscale area of Condado in the city of San Juan and its private gardens: “I thought it might be hard to leave so beautiful a neighborhood. . . . This, I could see, was the right side of ...
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Social space is to the practical space of everyday life, with its be more remote than strangers, what geometrical space is to the “travelling space” (espace hodologique) of ordinary experience, with It is cleaning day in Doña Lucrecia’s house. Doña Lucrecia, a middle- aged, white woman in one of the larger homes in Extensión Alhambra, guided me ...
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If you saw the old library, situated as it was, in a big, old wooden building painted a shade of yellow that is beautiful to people like me, with its wide veranda, its big, always open windows, its rows and rows of shelves filled with books, its beautiful wooden tables and chairs for sitting and reading, if you could hear the sound of ...
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People like me cannot really think in abstractions, people like me When I began Locked In, Locked Out I was already an involved observer. Ob-jectivity is highly valued in science’s gathering and production of knowledge, but, by the traditional definition, I was never, have never been, objective. By my own understanding of objectivity, the unobstructed, honest, clear under-...
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Although readers will get to know only their made- up names, the people whose words are featured here are more real and complex than this book can ever relay. I am indebted to the residents of Residencial Dr. Manuel A. de la Pila, Residencial José N. Gándara, Urbanización Alhambra, and Urbanización Extensión Alhambra for sharing their stories, their experiences, and their com-...
Page Count: 232
Illustrations: 19 illus.
Publication Year: 2013
Series Title: The City in the Twenty-First Century
Series Editor Byline: Eugenie L. Birch and Susan M. Wachter, Series Editors