3 October 2019
Presented at: Philosophy of the City, Detroit MI
The “city for all” is only ever really a “city for us,” and sometimes the not-yet-“us”.
By tracing the conflation between inclusion and equity in planning documents and discourse, I reveal how the “city for all” narrative reinforces normative values and identities. Inclusion and equity are frequently used interchangeably or in self-referential loops: i.e. an equitable city needs to be inclusive; and, in order to be inclusive, the city needs equitable policies. In the Canadian context, there is also a pronounced and strange interplay between inclusion/equity policies and multiculturalism/diversity nationalist narratives.
The struggle for rights and inclusion—largely lead by the civil, women’s, and gay rights movements—did some good (sometimes great good) for some people, but not all people. I argue this is because inclusion was only offered by means of assimilation. Those who cannot or will not assimilate continue to be excluded. Exclusion/inclusion are two sides of the same hegemonic coin; a demonstration of the state’s hegemonic power, not a transformation of power. Continue reading “Annihilation or Assimilation: the dark side of inclusive planning”
11 April 2018
Presented at: American Association of Geographers Annual Meeting, New Orleans LA
Does Ottawa even have a punk scene? Yes, buried beneath the carefully curated and manicured image of the National Capital, the punk scene hides… in plain sight. What about our image of punk and our image of Ottawa make their coexistence in the same space so unimaginable? Perhaps more importantly, from whose perspective and for whose ends are those images constructed? While the planning interests of “town and crown” notoriously and continually conflict, they are allowed to coexist and together form and reinforce the city’s identity. Perhaps it is because both agree that the National Capital ought to uphold the Great Canadian myth of multiculturalism and neoliberal democratic expectations of a safe, inclusive, and accessible city. Continue reading “‘Parking Lot Citys an Ugly Place’ Punk Inverted Images of Capital City”
Presented at: Association of American Geographers 2017 Annual Meeting, Boston MA
Session: Anarchist Political Ecology: Theoretical Horizons and Empirical Axes III – Urban Anarchism
Abstract: While the appropriation and transformation of undesirable space into punk space present ways to “fuck the man,” punk claims to space are neither absolute nor stable. The freedom to use and transform space outside the mainstream and its regulatory structures also makes these spaces vulnerable to dominant social and economic systems that define property and determine its value. When the desirability of different spaces throughout the city shifts, pressure is placed on the residents who no longer conform. Like many “undesirables” in cities, punks are perpetually forced to adapt, integrate, or re-make both space and place in increasingly marginal parts of the city. Punk space repeats a battle of fucking the man and being fucked by the man. Currently in Ottawa Ontario, there is also vocal and divisive critique from a feminist artist collective questioning whether men are really the ones being fucked. Continue reading “Fuck the man: punk space and feminist counter-resistance”