Sustainability in the Global City: Myth and Practice by Cindy Isenhour, Gary McDonogh, Melissa Checker

By Cindy Isenhour, Gary McDonogh, Melissa Checker

Towns play a pivotal yet paradoxical position sooner or later of our planet. As global leaders and electorate grapple with the results of progress, pollutants, weather swap, and waste, city sustainability has develop into a ubiquitous catchphrase and a beacon of wish. but, we all know little approximately how the concept that is carried out in everyday life - relatively in regards to questions of social justice and fairness. This quantity presents a special and very important contribution to ongoing conversations approximately city sustainability by means of taking a look past the guarantees, propaganda, and guidelines linked to the idea that as a way to discover either its mythic meanings and the sensible implications in numerous daily contexts. The authors current ethnographic reviews from towns in 11 nations and 6 continents. every one bankruptcy highlights the universalized assumptions underlying interpretations of sustainability whereas elucidating the various and contradictory ways that humans comprehend, contain, suggest for, and reject sustainability during their day-by-day lives.

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City 1(1/2):38–61. Harvey, David 2003 City as Body Politic. In In Wounded Cities: Destruction and Reconstruction in a Globalized World. Jane Schneider and Ida Susser, eds. pp. 25–48. Oxford: Berg Publishers. Harvey, David 2005 A Brief History of Neoliberalism. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Harvey, David 2008 The Right to the City. The New Left Review 53:23–8. Hern, Matt 2010 Common Ground in a Liquid City: Essays in Defense of an Urban Future. Oakland, CA: AK Press. Hornborg, Alf 2001 The Power of the Machine: Global Inequalities of Economy, Technology, and Environment.

In her analysis of Villa Rodrigo Bueno, a human settlement within a Buenos Aires ecological reserve, Carman illustrates how concerns about ecological conservation and biodiversity protection were used as a means of exclusion. Those who sought to evict the settlers living in the reserve claimed that the settlement was damaging the ecosystem and threatening wildlife. Yet, ironically, the villa was constructed on a city landfill and car dump. In an effort to save their community, villa residents shifted sustainability discourse away from the purely ecological to include social and economic goals.

Treating the city, in part, as a “discursive realm” (Low 2005:4; see also Low 1996), we argue that by exploring how seemingly “meaningless configuration[s]” of the urban landscape acquire significance, we can obtain crucial insights into the ways in which people know, live, and change cities. For myths do more than imbue the landscape with meaning; as fundamental parts of our worldview, they transform it. In Myth Today, Roland Barthes explains the subtle process by which myths become naturalized: In the second (mythical) system, causality is artificial, false; but it creeps, so to speak, through the back door of Nature.

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