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Latino Urbanism

The Politics of Planning, Policy and Redevelopment

Edited by David R. Diaz

Publication Year: 2012

The nation’s Latina/o population has now reached over 50 million, or 15% of the estimated total U.S. population of 300 million, and a growing portion of the world’s population now lives and works in cities that are increasingly diverse. Latino Urbanism provides the first national perspective on Latina/o urban policy, addressing a wide range of planning policy issues that impact both Latinas/os in the US, as well as the nation as a whole, tracing how cities develop, function, and are affected by socio-economic change.
The contributors are a diverse group of Latina/o scholars attempting to link their own unique theoretical interpretations and approaches to political and policy interventions in the spaces and cultures of everyday life. The three sections of the book address the politics of planning and its historic relationship with Latinas/os, the relationship between the Latina/o community and conventional urban planning issue sand challenges, and the future of urban policy and Latina/o barrios. Moving beyond a traditional analysis of Latinas/os in the Southwest, the volume expands the understanding of the important relationships between urbanization and Latinas/os including Mexican Americans of several generations within the context of the restructuring of cities, in view of the cultural and political transformation currently encompassing the nation.

Published by: NYU Press

Cover, Title Page, Copyright

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pp. v-vi

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pp. vii-viii

We wish to express our gratitude to all the contributors to this volume as well the external reviewers. It’s been a wonderful experience working alongside our contributors, who are all in their unique way forging new intellectual spaces for a critical engagement with cities across the United States. ...

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1. Introduction

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pp. 1-20

The last three decades of the twentieth century marked the beginning of epochal socioeconomic transformation of U.S. society. The economic reverberations of these changes have continued through the first decade of the twenty-first century as the income and wealth gap continues to widen. ...

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2. Barrios and Planning Ideology: The Failure of Suburbia and the Dialectics of New Urbanism

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pp. 21-46

There is no “New” in “New” Urbanism. Given the everyday life of the culture of el barrio and the legacy of compact, mixed uses that is characteristic of barrio urbanism, any claim to these design features as new in planning discourse is unjustified. A Eurocentric and market-driven profession has appropriated them as its own in a blatant attempt ...

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3. Aesthetic Belonging: The Latinization and Renewal of Union City, New Jersey

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pp. 47-64

Entre gustos no hay disgustos.” So goes a common adage in Spanish that roughly translates to “In matters of taste there is no debate.” The common-sense logic espoused is alluring and meant to demonstrate acceptance and open-mindedness toward taste. This statement also dismisses power relations involved in the implementation of aesthetics. ...

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4. Placing Barrios in Housing Policy

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pp. 65-86

Even as Latinos have surpassed African Americans as the largest minority group in the United States, we are also the population with the most severe housing needs. Housing programs from the federal level on down have scarcely addressed the backlog of needs, much less anticipated the future. ...

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5. Urban Redevelopment and Mexican American Barrios in the Socio-Spatial Order

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pp. 87-110

What has been the significance of urban redevelopment for Mexican American barrios? Rather than addressing this question narrowly from the perspective of public program impacts on the barrio built environment, this chapter situates the question within broader aspects of the development of Mexican American communities. ...

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6. A Pair of Queens: La Reina de Los Angeles, the Queen City of Charlotte, and the New (Latin) American South

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pp. 111-134

In 2003, Latina/os surpassed African Americans as the largest minority population in the United States. In fact, Latina/o population growth, which is fueled by a combination of migration flows and baby booms, stands to influence U.S. cities in ways that will radically alter many existing urban landscapes. ...

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7. Fostering Diversity: Lessons from Integration in Public Housing

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pp. 135-162

During the late 1980s, Boston became one of the many cities that were court-ordered to integrate public housing. Up to that point, the Boston Housing Authority (BHA) had ignored legislation prohibiting racial discrimination in the provision of public housing and had relentlessly continued to systematically discriminate against African Americans, ...

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8. Mexican Americans and Environmental Justice: Change and Continuity in Mexican American Politics

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pp. 163-180

The three decades after World War II were a period of unparalleled economic growth. Income, production, and consumption increased at a rapid pace along with the problems of hazardous waste disposal. By the 1970s, a full-fledged environmental movement emerged in response to the dangers posed by pollution to human health and the ecosystem. ...

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9. After Latino Metropolis: Cultural Political Economy and Alternative Futures

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pp. 181-202

This essay makes a general case for grounding a twenty-first-century critical Latino urbanism in something we shall provisionally call “cultural political economy.”1 It makes that case by attempting to resolve lingering theoretical tensions between socioeconomic (structural) and culture-based (semiotic) approaches to our neoliberal present ...

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About the Contributors

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pp. 203-204

David R. Diaz is Professor of Chicano Studies at California State University, Los Angeles, and author of Barrio Urbanism: Chicanos, Planning, and American Cities ...


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pp. 205-216

E-ISBN-13: 9780814724705
Print-ISBN-13: 9780814784044

Publication Year: 2012

Research Areas


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Subject Headings

  • Hispanic Americans -- Social conditions.
  • City planning -- United States.
  • Hispanic American neighborhoods.
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