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The New Blackwell Companion to the City

Gary Bridge (Editor), Sophie Watson (Editor)
ISBN: 978-1-4051-8981-1
784 pages
March 2011, Wiley-Blackwell
The New Blackwell Companion to the City (1405189819) cover image
This book considers the state of the city and contemporary urbanisation from a range of intellectual and international perspectives.
  • The most interdisciplinary collection of its kind
  • Provides a contemporary update on urban thinking that builds on well established debates in the field
  • Uses the city to explore economic, social, cultural, environmental and political issues more broadly
  • Includes contributions from non Western perspectives and cities
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List of Contributors.

Preface (Gary Bridge and Sophie Watson).


Part I: City Materialities:

1. Reflections on Materialities (Gary Bridge and Sophie Watson).

2. Neoliberal Urbanism: Cities and the Rule of Markets (Nik Theodore, Jamie Peck, and Neil Brenner).

3. The Liquid City of Megalopolis (John Rennie Short).

4. Ups and Downs in the Global City: London and New York in the Twenty-First Century (Susan S. Fainstein, Ian Gordon, and Michael Harloe).

5. Ethnography of an Indian City:Ahmedabad (Amrita Shah).

6. Landscape and Infrastructure in the Late-Modern Metropolis (Matthew Gandy).

7. Objects and the City (Harvey Molotch).

8. Ecologies of Dwelling: Maintaining High-Rise Housing in Singapore (Jane M. Jacobs and Stephen Cairns).

9. The Urbanization of Nature: Great Promises, Impasse, and New Beginnings (Maria Kaika and Erik Swyngedouw).

10. One Hundred Tons to Armageddon: Cities Combat Carbon (Peter Droege).

11. The New Military Urbanism (Stephen Graham).

12. The City’s New “Trinity” in Contemporary Shanghai: A Case Study of the Residential Housing Market (Wang Xiaoming, translated by Tyler Rooker).

13. Residence Through Revolution and Reform (Ray Forrest).

Part II: City Mobilities.

14. Reflections on Mobilities (Gary Bridge and Sophie Watson).

15. “Nothing Gained by Overcrowding”: The History and Politics of Urban Population Control (Andrew Ross).

16. Transnationality and the City (Nina Glick Schiller).

17. Migrants Making Technology Markets (Tyler Rooker).

18. Analytic Borderlands: Economy and Culture in the Global City (Saskia Sassen).

19. Nomadic Cities (David Pinder).

20. Mobility and Civility: Police and the Formation of the Modern City(Francis Dodsworth).

21. Disease and Infection in the City (Simon Carter).

22. Urban Choreographies: Dance and the Politics of Space (Daniel J. Walkowitz).

23. Cities on Wheels: Cars and Public Space (Brian Ladd).

Part III: City Affect.

24. Reflections on Affect (Gary Bridge and Sophie Watson).

25. Intensities of Feeling: Cloverfield, the Uncanny, and the Always Near Collapse of the City (Steve Pile).

26. The Future of New York’s Destruction: Fantasies, Fictions, and Premonitions after 9/11(Max Page).

27. Public Spaces? Branding, Civility, and the Cinema in Twenty-First-Century China (Stephanie Hemelryk Donald).

28. The Postmetropolis and Mental Life: Wong Kar-Wai’s Cinematic Hong Kong (Christoph Lindner).

29. Imagining Naples: The Senses of the City (Lesley Caldwell).

30. City Life and the Senses (John Urry).

31. The Politics of Urban Intersection(Materials, Affect, Bodies(AbdouMaliq Simone).

32. The City, the Psyche, and the Visibility of Religious Spaces (Andrew Hill).

Part IV: City Publics and Cultures

33. Reflections on Publics and Cultures (Gary Bridge and Sophie Watson).

34. Reflections on the Public Realm (Richard Sennett).

35. City-zenship in Contemporary China: Shanghai, Capital of the Twenty-First Century? (Michael Keith).

36. “Just Diversity” in the City of Difference (Kurt Iveson and Ruth Fincher).

37. The Emergence of Cosmopolitan Soho (Judith R. Walkowitz).

38. Modernity and Gaslight(Victorian London in the 1950s and 1960s (Frank Mort).

39. The Doing Undone: Vagrancies for the Acoustic City (Rob Stone).

40. Sustainable Cultural Spaces in the Global City: Cultural Clusters in Heritage Sites, Hong Kong and Singapore (Lily Kong).

41. Spatializing Culture(Embodied Space in the City (Setha Low).

42. The Street Politics of Jackie Smith (John Paul Jones III).

43. Walking and Performing “the City”: A Melbourne Chronicle (Benjamin Rossiter and Katherine Gibson).

Part V: City Divisions and Differences.

44. Reflections on Division and Difference (Gary Bridge and Sophie Watson).

45. The Lost Urban Sociology of Pierre Bourdieu (Mike Savage).

46. Traveling Theory: Embracing Post-Neoliberalism Through Southern Cities (Jenny Robinson and Sue Parnell).

47. Race, Class and Inequality in the South African City (Jeremy Seekings).

48. Oxford Street, Accra: Spatial Logics, Street Life, and the Transnational Imaginary (Ato Quayson).

49. Harlem Between Ghetto and Renaissance (Sharon Zukin).

50. Gentrification of the City (Tom Slater).

51. The Homosexuality of Cities (Julie Abraham).

52. Gendering Urban Space (Jessica Ellen Sewell).

53. Nights in the Global City (Sophie Body-Gendrot).

Part VI: City Politics and Planning.

54. Reflections on Politics and Planning (Gary Bridge and Sophie Watson).

55. Urban Planning in an Uncertain World (Ash Amin).

56. The Three Historic Currents of City Planning (Peter Marcuse).

57. Photourbanism(Planning the City from Above and from Below (Anthony Vidler).

58. Shaping Good Cities and Citizens (Evelyn S. Ruppert).

59. Regional Urbanization and the End of the Metropolis Era (Edward W. Soja).

60. Invisible Architecture: Neighborhood Governance in China’s Cities (John Friedmann).

61. Retreat from a Totalitarian Society: China’s Urbanism in the Making(Fulong Wu).

62. Transnational Urban Political Ecology: Health and Infrastructure in the Unbounded City (Roger Keil).

63. Entrepreneurial Urbanism, Policy Tourism, and the Making Mobile of Policies (Kevin Ward).

64. Making Up Global Urban Policies (Allan Cochrane).

65. Urban Governance in Europe:What Is Governed? (Patrick Le Galès).


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Gary Bridge is Professor of Urban Studies at the School for Policy Studies, University of Bristol.  He is the author of Reason in the City of Difference: Pragmatism, Communicative Action and Contemporary Urbanism (2005) and co-editor of Gentrification in a Global Context (with Rowland Atkinson, 2005), and The Blackwell City Reader (with Sophie Watson, second edition 2010).

Sophie Watson is Professor of Sociology at the Open University. She is the author  of City Publics: The (dis)enchantments of Urban Encounters (2006), co-author of Surface City: Sydney at the Millennium (1997) and co-editor of Postmodern Cities and Spaces (1995), Metropolis Now (1994), and The Blackwell City Reader (with Gary Bridge, second edition 2010), among other publications.

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“This collection of 65 academic essays covers everything from the role of dance in shaping cities to race and class in South Africa to the application of military techniques to city planning … The destructive effects of global capital and neo-liberal politics are much explored. Throwing out striking insights and facts... [it offers] useful and necessary responses to significant changes in the world.” The Observer

“This new volume is in six sections, each introduced by an editorial overview… The individual chapters range from theoretical politics and sociology to the practicalities of maintaining high rise housing. Films and novels provide examples in many sections. Sometimes a chapter can be a surprise … there is something new and something very familiar in each … Geographers and sociologists will get much from this book, and there is material for architects and politicians. There is also something in the book for the ordinary city dweller.” Reference Reviews

“Of great interest to upper-level undergraduate students, graduate students, and scholars of urban studies, as well as those in urban planning, urban sociology, and urban geography ... Recommended." Choice

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