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Globalization and Community

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Globalization and Community

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Reconstructing Chinatown

Ethnic Enclave, Global Change

Jan Lin

In the American popular imagination, Chinatown is a mysterious and dangerous place, clannish and dilapidated, filled with sweatshops, vice, and organized crime. In this well-written and engaging volume, Jan Lin presents a real-world picture of New York City’s Chinatown, countering this “orientalist” view by looking at the human dimensions and the larger forces of globalization that make this vital neighborhood both unique and broadly instructive. Using interviews with residents, firsthand observation, archival research, and U.S. census data, Lin delivers an informed, reliable picture of Chinatown today. Lin claims that to understand contemporary ethnic neighborhoods like this one we must dispense with notions of monolithic “community.” When he looks at Chinatown, Lin sees a neighborhood that is being rebuilt, both literally and economically. Rather than a clannish and unified peer group, he sees substantial class inequality and internal social conflict. There is also social change, most visibly manifested in dramatic episodes of collective action by sweatshop workers and community activists and in the growing influence of Chinatown’s denizens in electoral politics. Popular portrayals of Chinatown also reflect a new global reality: as American cities change with the international economy, traditional assumptions about immigrant incorporation into U.S. society alter as well. Lin describes the public disquiet and official response regarding immigration, sweatshops, and the influx of Asian capital. He outlines the ways that local, state, and federal governments have directed and gained from globalization in Chinatown through banking deregulation and urban redevelopment policy. Finally, Lin puts forth Chinatown as a central enclave in the “world city” of New York, arguing that globalization brings similar structural processes of urban change to diverse locations. In the end, Lin moves beyond the myth of Chinatown, clarifying the meaning of globalization and its myriad effects within the local context.

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Regions That Work

How Cities and Suburbs Can Grow Together

Manuel Pastor Jr.

Offering a new vision of community-based regionalism, this book arrives just as "smart growth" measures and other attempts to link cities and suburbs are beginning to make their mark on the political and analytical scene. The authors make a powerful case for emphasizing equity, arguing that metropolitan areas must reduce poverty in order to grow and that low-income individuals must make regional connections in order to escape poverty. A hard-hitting analysis of Los Angeles demonstrates that the roots of the unrest of 1992 lay in regional economic deterioration and that the recovery was slowed by insufficient attention to the poor. Regions That Work then provides a history and critique of community-development corporations, a statistical analysis of the poverty-growth relationship in seventy-four metro areas, a detailed study of three regions that have produced superior equity outcomes, and a provocative call for new policies and new politics.

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Remaking New York

Primitive Globalization And The Politics Of Urban Community

William Sites

Inequality increases, instability grows, communities fragment: this is the fate of a city in the wake of globalization—but is globalization really the cause? Proposing a new perspective on politics, globalization, and the city, this provocative book argues that such urban problems result in part from U.S. policies that can be changed. William Sites develops the concept of primitive globalization, identifying a pattern of reactive politics—ad hoc measures to subsidize business, displace the urban poor, and dismantle the welfare state—that uproots social actors (corporations, citizens, urban residents) and facilitates a damaging, short-term-oriented type of international integration. In light of this theory, Sites examines the transformation of New York City since the 1970s, focusing on the logic of political action at national, local, and neighborhood levels. In the process, the story of late twentieth-century New York and its Lower East Side community emerges as something different: not a tale of globalist transformation or of local resurgence but a distinctly American case, one in which urban politics and the state, in their own right, exacerbate inequality and community fragmentation within the city.

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Security in the Bubble

Navigating Crime in Urban South Africa

Christine Hentschel

Focusing on the South African city of Durban, Security in the Bubble looks at spatialized security practices, engaging with strategies and dilemmas of urban security governance in cities around the world. While apartheid was spatial governance at its most brutal, postapartheid South African cities have tried to reinvent space, using it as a “positive” technique of governance.

Christine Hentschel traces the contours of two emerging urban regimes of governing security in contemporary Durban: handsome space and instant space. Handsome space is about aesthetic and affective communication as means to making places safe. Instant space, on the other hand, addresses the crime-related personal “navigation” systems employed by urban residents whenever they circulate through the city. While handsome space embraces the powers of attraction, instant space operates through the powers of fleeing. In both regimes, security is conceived not as a public good but as a situational experience that can.

No longer reducible to the after-pains of racial apartheid, this city’s fragmentation is now better conceptualized, according to Hentschel, as a heterogeneous ensemble of bubbles of imagined safety.


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The Servant Class City

Urban Revitalization versus the Working Poor in San Diego

David J. Karjanen

San Diego, California, is frequently viewed as a model for American urban revitalization. It looks like a success story, with blight and poverty replaced by high-rises and jobs. But David J. Karjanen shows that the much-touted job opportunities for poor people have been concentrated in low-paying service work as the cost of living in San Diego has soared. The Servant Class City documents how, over a period of three decades, San Diego’s urban transformation actually eroded the economic standing of the city’s working poor.

Karjanen demonstrates that urban policy in San Diego, which has been devoted to increasing tourism, has fostered the creation of jobs that do not actually provide either livable wages or paths to upward mobility. Marshaling a wealth of heretofore uncollected data, he challenges the presumption that decades-long stagnation of job mobility in the united states is a result of insufficient worker training or a “skills mismatch,” or is attributable to various personal qualities of the urban poor.

Karjanen interweaves profiles of people with a compelling presentation of data. Each chapter addresses a significant topic: hospitality industry jobs, retail work, informal employment, “fringe banking,” and economic barriers to mobility. In revealing the true story of the “poverty traps” that are associated with low-wage jobs in the service economy, The Servant Class City complicates the rosy picture of life in an American tourist boomtown.  

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Shanghai Rising

State Power and Local Transformations in a Global Megacity

Xiangming Chen

Until around 1990, Shanghai was China’s premier but sluggish industrial center. Now at the beginning of the twenty-first century, the joint impact of global forces and state power has turned Shanghai into a dynamic megacity. Shanghai’s remarkable growth in economy, infrastructure, and global presence has prompted questions about the Shanghai “miracle.” This collection places the city’s unprecedented rise in a rare comparative examination of U.S. cities, as well as with Asian megacities Singapore and Hong Kong, providing a nuanced account of how Shanghai’s politics, economy, society, and space have been transformed by macro- and micro-level forces. Contributors: Stephen W. K. Chiu, Chinese U of Hong Kong; K. C. Ho, National U of Singapore; John D. Kasarda, U of North Carolina; Hanlong Lu, Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences; Tai-lok Lui, Chinese U of Hong Kong; Ann R. Markusen, U of Minnesota; Anthony M. Orum, U of Illinois, Chicago; Yuan Ren, Fudan U Shanghai; Saskia Sassen, Columbia U; Jiaming Sun, Texas A&M U, Commerce; Fulong Wu, Cardiff U; Pingkang Yu, George Washington U; Tingwei Zhang, U of Illinois, Chicago; Zhenhua Zhou, Development Research Center, Shanghai Municipal Government.

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Turkish Berlin

Integration Policy and Urban Space

Annika Marlen Hinze

The integration of immigrants into a larger society begins at the local level. Turkish Berlin reveals how integration has been experienced by second-generation Turkish immigrant women in two neighborhoods in Berlin, Germany. While the neighborhoods are similar demographically, the lived experience of the residents is surprisingly different.

Informed by first-person interviews with both public officials and immigrants, Annika Marlen Hinze makes clear that local integration policies—often created by officials who have little or no contact with immigrants—have significant effects on the assimilation of outsiders into a community and a society. Focusing on the Turkish neighborhoods of Kreuzberg and Neukölln, Hinze shows how a combination of local policy making and grassroots organizing have contributed to one neighborhood earning a reputation as a hip, multicultural success story and the other as a rougher neighborhood featuring problem schools and high rates of unemployment. Aided by her interviews, she describes how policy makers draw from their imaginations of urban space, immigrants, and integration to develop policies that do not always take social realities into consideration. She offers useful examples of how official policies can actually exacerbate the problems they are trying to help solve and demonstrates that a powerful history of grassroots organizing and resistance can have an equally strong impact on political outcomes.

Employing spatial theory as a tool for understanding the complex processes of integration, Hinze asks two related questions: How do immigrants perceive themselves and their experiences in a new culture? And how are immigrants conceived of by politicians and policy makers? Although her research highlights the German–Turk experience in Berlin, her answers have implications that resonate far beyond the city’s limits.

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Urban Policy in the Time of Obama

James DeFilippis

With his background as a community organizer and as a state legislator representing Chicago’s South Side, Barack Obama became America’s most “urban” president since Teddy Roosevelt. But what has been his record in dealing with the issues most impacting our metropolitan areas today? Looking past the current administration, what are the future prospects of the nation’s cities, and how have they been shaped by our policies in this century? Seeking to answer these questions, Urban Policy in the Time of Obama’s contributors explore a broad range of policy arenas that shape, both directly and indirectly, metropolitan areas and urbanization processes.

This volume reveals the Obama administration’s surprisingly limited impact on cities, through direct policy initiatives such as Strong Cities, Strong Communities, Promise Neighborhoods, and Choice Neighborhood Initiatives. There has been greater impact with broader policies that shape urban life and governance, including immigration reform, education, and health care.

Closing with Cedric Johnson’s afterword, “Baltimore, the Policing Crisis, and the End of the Obama Era”—illuminating the “Black Lives Matter” movement and what its broader social context says about city governance in our times—Urban Policy in the Time of Obama finds that most of the dominant policies and policy regimes of recent years have fallen short of easing the ills of America’s cities, and calls for a more equitable and just urban policy regime.

Contributors: Rachel G Bratt, Tufts University; Christine Thurlow Brenner, University of Massachusetts Boston; Karen Chapple, University of California, Berkeley; James Fraser, Vanderbilt University; Edward G. Goetz, University of Minnesota; Dan Immergluck, Georgia Tech; Amy T. Khare, University of Chicago; Robert W. Lake, Rutgers University; Pauline Lipman, University of Illinois at Chicago; Lorraine C. Minnite, Rutgers University-Camden; Kathe Newman, Rutgers University; Deirdre Oakley, Georgia State University; Frances Fox Piven, City University of New York; Hillary Silver, Brown University; Janet Smith, University of Illinois at Chicago; Preston H. Smith II, Mount Holyoke College; Todd Swanstrom, Unviersity of Missouri–St. Louis; Nik Theodore, University of Illinois at Chicago; J. Phillip Thompson, MIT.

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Work Of Cities

Susan E. Clarke

Are cities obsolete relics of an earlier era? In this pathbreaking book, Susan E. Clarke and Gary L. Gaile contend that contrary to this conventional wisdom, cities are growing in importance. Far from irrelevant, local governments are vital political arenas for the new work of cities-empowering their citizens to adapt and serve as catalysts for the global economy. Using Robert Reich’s The Work of Nations as a point of departure, the authors argue that globalism, coupled with increasing disparities of wealth and power, changes not only the work of nations but also the role of communities. Clarke and Gaile begin by detailing the transformation of the United States to a postindustrial economy situated in a “global web.” They then examine the emergence of local entrepreneurial policy choices in the context of economic and political restructuring and in the absence of federal resources. Using empirical data to test assumptions about what leads cities to choose new policies, Clarke and Gaile explore local context through four case studies: Cleveland, Tacoma, Syracuse, and Jacksonville. They discuss human capital as the linchpin of globalization, arguing that analytical ability, information skills, and the capacity to innovate are all key to wealth creation. In conclusion, they contend that inattention to the decline in human and social capital will ultimately undermine any local development efforts-unless local policymakers craft responses to globalization that integrate rather than isolate citizens. The Work of Cities is both bold and nuanced, pragmatic yet compassionate in its recommendations. It is essential reading for anyone who cares about the fate of our metropolitan communities and the people who live there. 0-8166-2892-0 Cloth $47.95xx 0-8166-2893-9 Paper $18.95 240 pages 9 tables, 2 figures 5 7/8 x 9 July Globalization and Community Series, volume 1 Translation inquiries: University of Minnesota Press

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A World of Gangs

Armed Young Men and Gangsta Culture

John M. M. Hagedorn

“Street gangs mirror the inhuman ambitions and greed of society’s trendsetters and deities even as they fight to the death over scraps from the table of the international drug trade.  But John Hagedorn, characteristically, also finds hope in the contradictory values of outlaw youth—selflessness, solidarity, and love amid cupidity and directionless rage—and he maintains the hope that a culture of resistance will ultimately prevail over the forces of self-destruction. Whether one shares his optimism or not, he makes a compelling case that the future of the world will be determined on the streets of our cities.” —Mike Davis, from the Foreword

 

“A World of Gangs is an illuminating journey around the cultures, lives, tragedies, and dreams of millions of rebellious youth around the planet. It is an indispensable work to understand the world we live in and essential reading for students of cities and communities.” —Manuel Castells

 

 

For the more than a billion people who now live in urban slums, gangs are ubiquitous features of daily life. Though still most closely associated with American cities, gangs are an entrenched, worldwide phenomenon that play a significant role in a wide range of activities, from drug dealing to extortion to religious and political violence. In A World of Gangs, John Hagedorn explores this international proliferation of the urban gang as a consequence of the ravages of globalization.

 

Looking closely at gang formation in three world cities-Chicago, Rio de Janeiro, and Capetown-he discovers that some gangs have institutionalized as a strategy to confront a hopeless cycle of poverty, racism, and oppression. In particular, Hagedorn reveals, the nihilistic appeal of gangsta rap and its street ethic of survival “by any means necessary” provides vital insights into the ideology and persistence of gangs around the world. This groundbreaking work concludes on a hopeful note. Proposing ways in which gangs might be encouraged to overcome their violent tendencies, Hagedorn appeals to community leaders to use the urgency, outrage, and resistance common to both gang life and hip-hop in order to bring gangs into broader movements for social justice.

 

John M. Hagedorn is associate professor of criminal justice at the University of Illinois, Chicago. He is editor of Gangs in the Global City and author of the highly influential People and Folks: Gangs, Crime, and the Underclass in a Rustbelt City.

 

MacArthur fellow Mike Davis is the author of many books, including Planet of Slums and, most recently, Buda’s Wagon: A Brief History of the Car Bomb.

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