Abstract

ABSTRACT:

Based on ongoing research in Chicago, this commentary focuses on a ubiquitous figure in mainstream imaginaries of late industrial life in the urban American Midwest—the vacant home and the vacant residential lot it becomes when brought down by wrecking, weather, debts, and deferred maintenance. "Vacancy" is the commonplace term most of my interlocutors will reach for to describe such places. More often than not, this description opens onto expectations of imminent refilling. This commentary considers such prevalent descriptions and related expectations alongside other language for these places. I argue that attending to such language complicates these expectations of imminent refilling. What's more, it challenges urban anthropologists to reconsider how our own expectations of expansive urban growth color and constrain our understandings of late industrial urban futures.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1534-1518
Print ISSN
0003-5491
Pages
pp. 417-436
Launched on MUSE
2022-06-26
Open Access
No
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